Monday, April 30, 2007

Goodbye to old Friends!

Last week I ran 45.58 miles. In the Tinkoff 1,000 - I have run 711 miles. Today I ran 5.5 miles on the treadmill.

Why the treadmill, you ask?

Goodbye to old Friends!

I have found that foot comfort is pretty tantamount to running. Shoes are ever so important to good running health. I had to give up my dear, old, faithful friends; my Mizuno trail shoes.

Notice the wear that I have established on the old shoes. On the left shoe, the decorative bric-a-brac under the top edge has worn. I obviously run with my feet very close together (wearing against each other). Then the tread on the bottom of the right foot is almost gone under the toe area.

How long does a trail shoe (or any shoe) last? A lot depends on the user. How hard they exercise, how often, type of terrain, etc. The salesperson at the running store said 300 to 400 miles. In that case, I should have replaced the shoes twice this year alone. Seems excessive to me. The best guide would have to be performance. I had noticed the performance failing in the last month.

The buying experience.
I went to a local running store, The Boulder Running Company.
Good, clean stores, knowledgeable salespeople, lots of inventory.
I looked at shoes that would work with my over-pronated feet. I tried on a pair of Mizuno Wave Ascend 2 shoes. They fit and felt like I had been wearing them for a while. I walked about a bit, then headed over to the video gait test. I ran for a bit on a treadmill and then we watched the video. The shoes are doing exactly what I need for them to do. I bought them.

Why run the treadmill today? I wanted to break the new shoes in in a controlled manner. I wore them yesterday after the purchase. Today's run felt a great deal like I was wearing my old shoes. That is a good sign!

Sunday, April 29, 2007

First impressions

Yesterday I ran 3 miles on the street and 2.88 miles of trails.

First impressions -
This is an amazing tool. Without any difficulty, this unit found sattelites quickly and easily. I ran a street course on a street by my house that is close to 3 miles long. It recorded much more information than I knew. The software that comes with it is minimal but functional. I also signed up for the free service offered by, but don't really like that either.

Cory gave me a clue to try the software, SportTracks.

This is an amazing piece of software. And it is free. I have no doubt that I will donate very soon to the author. This is GOOD software. I can use to train for running and also in my Jeeping sport. I tried several uses for both the forerunner and the software. I was pleased with all of my trials.

I even tried using the forerunner with mapping software both as a GPS antenna and as an interface for files (tracks, routes, waypoints). My mapping software did find the forerunner but was unable to download files (history). I used SportTracks as an interface and was able to transfer file that the mapping software could use. SportTracks can also let you see where you ran or recorded history on Google Earth.

I recorded two running workouts with it yesterday. I also recorded two Jeep runs with it. We decided to drive the Jeep to a trail in Buena Vista, Colorado. It did a great job recording all of the trials. After working with SprtTracks, I was able to see all of them on my mapping software.

Great GPS training unit. Great GPS tracking antenna/receiver. Great software!

Now to start training for my first 5K, 10K and half-marathon!

So far, I am a happy guy with this purchase.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Einstein, after all

Yesterday, I ran 6.2 miles. It took 70 minutes and expended 1020 calories.
Today, I ran 5.5 miles. It took 61 minutes and expended 903 calories.

Einstein, after all
Denver and Colorado is well known for the weather (isn't every place every where, though?) This week we had torrential rain and snow. It was 24 hours or so then it was over. Today is beautiful. I am planning on going outside soon.

One thing that I really like about the treadmill is the information that it offers. At the press of a button or two I can get all kinds of information. I'd like to get that same information as I run outside. I have used a Garmin eTrex Venture in the past. It does great, but... It is a handheld unit. It often loses satellite reception. Information is available but can be misleading.

I am looking for a runner's gps unit now. I have done some research and asked friends what they use. I beleive that I will be getting the Garmin Forerunner 205. I will probably get it at a local running store. Got to support those who support us!

As Tigger would say, "TTFN!"

Thursday, April 26, 2007

The Diet of an Athlete (and then there is mine)

Yesterday, I ran 5 1/2 miles. It took me 62 minutes. I have not run today as of yet.

The Diet of an Athlete...
I have successfully lost weight in the past. On more than one occasion.

With the Adkins Diet, I lost 45 pounds. It was Doctor prescribed. I kept it off for 6 months. Then, I reverted. Bacon and egg breakfasts worked very well for me and I loved them. That doesn't mean that it was good for me.

My current lifestyle (not truly a diet) assisted me in losing 65 pounds this time. It has been a year now since that lost and I have kept it off. I do tend to go up a few pounds and down a few pounds. I changed Doctors to get here. I like the fact that the new Doctor is concerned with more than "Good Numbers" and weight loss. He addresses the entire me.

That is how I found running. I really like to run. It is a deep and satisfying feeling! Although allowed "Free Days" and "Free Meals," I hardly ever take them. Last Saturday was the first day I'd taken off from running in about 8 months. That is why I ran 10 miles on Sunday. It just feels good to run.

My problem now is that I've found I have a "Sweet Tooth" and a "Fat Tooth." Both need satisfaction from time to time. What is a "Fat Tooth?" is an excellent source for health information. I use it frequently. Recently, they published an article on "Got a Fat Tooth?" You can read it at -

A paragraph from the article reads:
"A 2005 study identified a protein, CD36, that acts as a possible "fat sensor" in the tongue (also known as a fatty acid transporter, or FAT). Mice missing the gene for the protein don’t have a craving for fatty foods, compared to mice with the gene.

In people, "Some scientists think that we’re programmed to like fatty foods, others think it’s learned," says Marion Nestle, PhD, MPH, a professor at New York University. No matter, we crave fat. And now we can blame it on a pesky protein receptor on our tongues that may detect and taste the substance. It joins other, well-known, taste sensors for sweet, sour, bitter, and salty."

Whether that is true or not is still under debate. I believe it is true! At least for me. There are suggestions at the end of the article for getting a Fat Fix. I used a lot of them prior to reading the article.

Running is a physical phenomenon. It can allow you to stretch your personal boundaries. I can eat some food that is questionable for anyone to eat. Then I can work it off either on the trail or on the Dreadmill. It is a great physical way to improve other poorer habits!

Still, as we all know inside, "Cheesy Poofs" are not good for you. So, you really shouldn't eat them (too often). There are better, healthier alternatives.

A Side Note -
I would like to thank Susan, Maddy and Cory for their excellent suggestions of getting started toward a race prep schedule. Maddy also sent an excellent web resource for finding races in any area. Thanks, guys!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Thoughts from a treadmill...

Today, I ran 7 miles. It took 78 minutes.

OK... I am ready to commit. I want to run a real 1/2 marathon.

I have no idea as to how to prepare for it. True, I run at least 5 miles most days. I ran 10 Sunday morning and could have completed the additional 3 something easily enough. But shouldn't some preparation be necessary?

I used to run with my friend, Tom. His knees bother him now so I can't run with him all of the time.

I ran a lot of long outside trails last week. Little effort and a lot of results.

Does antone know of any resources that could help me prepare?

Let me know...

Monday, April 23, 2007

Zen or Einstein?

Last week I ran 35 approximate miles. I have run 666 miles (as of this morning) toward my participation in the Tinkoff 1,000.

I am firmly of the philosophy that most runners fit into 2 categories. They are either an Einsten or a Zen runner. An Einstein runner records stats - What those stats are is completely up to the individual runner. A Zen runner runs for the freedom of running. Most of the time, I am an Einstein runner. Last week, I was a Zen runner.

I have never been so impressed with my own ability as I was last week. Mornings were cool, but each day heated up enough to make for a comfortable run. It is almost a religious feeling as you run along unencumbered. Even though I was in the middle of nowhere, I did not need to carry anything as my shuttle service was either immediately just ahead or just behind.

I hope that I can maintain my physical maintenance so I can do this again next year. This last week was one of the major events of my life. I truly enjoyed it!

The Behind The Rocks trail is a long one. 14 miles for the trail and another 14 or so for the return road to the highway. The scenery on this trail was amazing. This was one of my favorite runs last week.

On our way out, there was a sandstorm. An extremely interesting place to visit!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

My hands get cold...

I have explained that my hands can get cold during a run. It doesn't happen immediately. It tends to happen after I have been exercising for a while. Most of the time it happens during times of cold weather.

I have been prescribed a medication for my hypertensive condition. I have talked to my Doctor about it. He has told me that there are a few contributing factors. First of all, the medicine may be a contributing factor. Secondly, as we run, the body may decrease blood flow to the extremities to increase warmth in the inner core. This will happen especially during cold or inclement weather (I do keep the basement of my house cooler than the true living area - Saves on heating it).

It can be your body telling you to warm up. Check the clothing that you are wearing and make sure that you are warm enough but layered enough to cool down when you need to. A simple form of hypothermia can cause cold hands.

I have a good pulse. You can check your capillary refill by applying pressure to a fingernail; it should turn white with pressure and rapidly (less than 3 seconds) return to normal color when pressure is released. My fingernails pass this test.

The Doctor asked if I could tolerate it. I told him that I could. He said to try wearing some light gloves. A favorite area store has light cotton gardening gloves that are not real expensive. I buy them and use them. They are comfortable and slip on and off easily. They can be machine washed and dried. I don't wear them all the time but I do when the hands get cold.

Is it impossible to deal with? No. Just inconvenient.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Running Moab!

The Manti LaSal Mountains loom large over the city of Moab.

It was a lot of fun. I ran every day. As the Jeeps would follow the trail I would run alongside (or ahead or a bit behind).
These pictures are from the first day when we took the Moab Rim trail.

I ran up and down that very steep incline from the Kane Creek road to the Mesa top. The Jeeps were negotiating some precarious rock face obstacles mere inches from the edge. We had our first incident that day. One Jeep was coming down a steep that caused the Jeep to camber to the point of unbalance. I was able to hop on the back bumper (along with two other people) and keep it from flopping on its side.

The scenery here is just amazing. There is so much to see and do. There are two national parks. Arches and Canyonlands. There are hiking, biking and Jeep trails all over the area. You can rent many vehicles, or get a shuttle service to drop you off and pick you up. I ran the following trails during my time there this last week.
Saturday - Fins n Things
Sunday - Moab Rim
Monday - Poison Spider, Golden Spike & Gold Bar Rim.
Tuesday - Hell's Revenge
Wednesday - Behind The Rocks
Thursday - Cliff Hanger
Friday - Klondike Bluffs, Glenwood Canyon

The group was finishing lunch as I ran ahead to the Launchpad obstacle on the Golden Spike trail. On Golden Spike, one of the Jeeps negotiated a steep step incorrectly and rolled their vehicle (360 degrees). He was able to drive it out, but it did sustain some major damage (windshield, back window, roof, hood and door damage). Later on the same trail system, another rig sheared off his lug bolts on his driver side rear tire. He said he knew that something was wrong as he watched his tire just fall over in his mirror. They pulled off his other rear tire, popped out 3 of the 6 lug bolts, installed them on the other side and drove it out (slowly and carefully).

Friday was a great day running. I ran the Klondike Bluffs trail in the morning from Highway 191 to the slickrock. It was cooler weather but not so cool that you had to bundle up. There were bicycle shuttles and Mountain Bikers all over the place. Many of them commented that I was faster than they were. Now that is affirming!!!

I-70 goes through Glenwood Canyon between Dotsero, Colorado and Glenwood Springs, Colorado. It is a beautiful canyon that ended up being the last finished portion of the national interstate highway system. It is deep and was treacherous to build in. To take advantage of the natural sights and beauty of this trail there is an exercise trail that runs the length. I ran part of that in the afternoon.

I had two runs that were my favorites of the week. My favorite was Cliff Hanger. This picture is of the Jeep group for that day sitting on the edge of the cliff. I ran the entire trail from the final overlook to the beginning of the trail. The Jeeps were slow in their negotiation of the trail, so I ran back up to meet them! There is a real sensation of splendor and exuberance in realizing that you are experiencing this country in a way that only a runner can experience!

The other was Behind The Rocks. I ran for mile after mile feeling wonderful as the miles flew by under my feet and experiencing the kind of scenery that red rock country can give to a person.

I would like to explain how I ran. First of all, you will be able to see that I don't always have water with me. I did not need to carry it as my Shuttle service were always within a mile of me. I never went more than 5 feet off of the trail (unless everyone was together). That was for safety. If anything happened to me, they would be able to find me as they came along. The situation worked out great for me! Next year, we'll take the FRS radios. I have one that is a wrist watch and easy to carry. Remember to be safe back-country.

I was referred to at one point as the "Trail Bloodhound." Trails are not always marked as clearly as they could be. On Behind The Rocks, after the "White Knuckle Hill" obstacle (a vertical drop of about 6 feet). The group took what appeared to be the trail but it abruptly petered out. We back-tracked but lost the trail again. Kiddingly, over the CB radio, one of the drivers said to send Charlie, the trail bloodhound out. I ran out to an edge and sighted the trail on the valley floor. I back-tracked it to a series of "difficult access ledges" and we were soon on our way out of the back-country.

Of course, as these things go, I ended up being called the Trail Dog. It emulates those with dogs that have them run alongside their rig. Oh well!!

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Pictures of running in red canyon country

Running down Hell's Gate on the Hell's Revenge trail.

Sorry, the internet connection here at the cabin is not wonderful. Will one picture do for now?

Friday, April 13, 2007

The Emperor's new clothes...

Today, I ran 5.5 miles. It took 60 minutes and burned approximately 910 calories. It was a good run, but difficult to complete. Mostly due to the anticipation of the vacation tomorrow.

The Emperor's New Clothes -
Think of how you start to run. Any clothes will do as the objective is to get out and run! But eventually, you have to get down to a comfort level.

I anticipated sweating. My very first piece of athletic wear was a heavy sweatshirt. I ripped the sleeves off (that macho image of a work out shirt). It worked but I found out very quickly that my neck must be mis-shaped! No matter what kind of shirt I may buy, it chafes against the front of my neck! That first shirt I ripped opened the neck at the front for comfort. I have also done that to most of the shirts I wear now. Sweatshirt material is not made for comfortable running. It is heavy and as it loads (sweat, remember?) it gets even heavier.

Isn't a nice comfortable pair of running shorts great? In ignorance, I started by using sweat pants or a pair of denim shorts. They are pants but they are definitely not made for running. The first time I went into an actual retail store that offered "Running" clothes was a revelation for me and a boon to the owner of the shop.

The person that assisted me at that shop explained a lot of a runners life and personal comfort to me. I got shirts, socks, shorts, etc. Somewhat spur of the moment, somewhat expensive, but I have never regretted it.

My most important first purchase? Running shoes! My friend and coach, Tom, told me that I had pronated feet. I looked at him like he was speaking a foreign language. He took the time to explain what that meant.

To explain it here, I have visited the University of Iowa site -

The first two paragraphs state -
'To pronate is to turn or rotate the foot inward so that the inner edge of the sole bears the body's weight. The right way for the foot to land is to hit the ground heel first. Body weight is then passed along by the arch toward the outside of the foot and upward to the ball of the foot.

A pronated foot is one that rolls inward when walking or running and does not properly pass the weight over the foot. This creates a biomechanical problem that stresses the foot and lower leg. The knee and hip are affected as well because of the inward rotation of the leg.'

My question to him was, "How do you correct for that?" "Simple," he said, "You have to buy the correct shoes."

A little internet research showed me what he meant. I went out soon after and found some Mizuno shoes. I have never felt so good about running as I did after wearing those shoes for a week.

I run outside a lot in the back country. Although the shoes were very comfortable, I wanted something more. I went to The Runners Roost (a retail store for running shoes) and was professionally fitted for my first pair of TRAIL shoes. Now I am so satisfied with my shoes! Trail shoes are made to run off-road, off-track, back country. A firmer soul and heel with rigid side construction made them the most comfortable shoes I have ever had.

I do wear a headband and gloves when I run. The gloves will be covered in another blog very soon.

If you are new to running, take the time to get some comfortable clothes. Make sure that you pamper yourself (and guard your foot health) with a pair of running shoes made for your feet. I found it to be a wise purchase and one that every runner should make!

Next time? My hands get cold as I run...

Thursday, April 12, 2007


Business first - I ran 6.50 miles today.

What is a coach? A coach can be a private tutor, or one who instructs or trains. they can also be a Mentor - a trusted counselor or guide.

My question is - Are you a coach? Sometimes it is because you care for another person. Sometimes it is because they are faltering and need some help. Sometimes it is because you feel that the other person may need some help.

I totally support coaches and the (sometimes) subtle ways that they work. It has been my experience that sometimes these people don't even know that they are a coach.

When I go to public places, people come up to me and say hi. I may or may not remember them, but they have remembered me. I was an active manager at one time. I worked at making each and everyone of the people assigned to me succeed. If they succeeded than I succeeded. It was more than that, though, as I also wanted them to succeed as people and in everything that they did. Many appreciated that and when they see me, made sure that they come up and talk to me.

I would like to thank some of the people that I feel are my coaches. These people are -

Tom. My best friend for as long as I can remember. He pushes me to acheive and to end my evil ways (even if they are in his imagination). Tom is a lot of the reason that I started this life changing series of events.

Susan. Met her through a podcast group. I respect her due to her striving to improve and through her own improvement pushes others to succeed like she has. Susan is the reason that I am writing this blog.

Ron. A Yahoo Group leader that really helped to make a difference in my life healthwise.

Thanks for helping me and pushing me.

If you are following the same path that I have taken in getting healthy, look for and encourage your peers to act as a coach when you need it. It can make all of the difference in the world.

But now, reader, ask yourself... Who are the coaches in your life that made a difference?

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

"Eleven is Magic!"

Today's run was for 5.5 miles. It took me 61:38. Have I told you that I love running now?

"Eleven is Magic!" is another game that I mindplay while I run. When I get close to a change of pace, or a switchover to check for calories burnt, I try to look for that 11/100 of a mile just prior to the event, I tend to smile, give a double handed thumbs up, then point the forefingers to the front. Just a little anticipatory thing that I do.

About this time in my personal change of lifestyles, I discovered that I was losing between 2 to 2 1/2 pounds per week. I would weigh weekly. I was still recording what I ate and the calorie load. I was checking and recording my blood pressure twice a day. The 2005 holidays were over. I was getting ready for a Doctor's appointment in April of 2006.

It was a matter of keeping at it and proving to myself, my family, my friends and my Doctor that I could and would do it!

- - - - - - - - - -

Not all of life is running. I think that all of us realize that. Support groups and like-minded people can come from anywhere and often do.

An example of that is another of the podcasts that I listen to on a regular basis. It's called, "2 Guys, 1 Brain." These are two guys that work for a Sheriff's department in a jail. They engage in wonderful repartee. It makes you feel like you just came in to where they are having a conversation. They talk of life in general, family, poker, vacations and work at the jail.

I chanced on them while searching iTunes. Their website is located at - and you can listen to their podcasts on iTunes or at Many is the mile that I've run while listening to this 4 star podcast.

They run a forum associated with the podcast. It has provided a support group for me during this period changeover from unhealthy to healthy. I really appreciate the support that the group has given to me.

- - - - - - - - - -

I've mentioned that I am headed for Moab next week. Molly, my dog, is going with me. I have two names for the Jeep. The first is The Mighty YJ and the second is Molly's Dog House. Whenever I go on vacation, Molly goes with. I beleive that having a pet is an obligation. You have to commit to pets as best you can for the entire length of their lives.

I reserve hotel rooms that take pets, go camping or rent cabins that allow dogs. She is well-behaved on the trail and in the hotel so I have never hesitated to bring her along.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Games runners play...

Business first - I ran 7 miles today and burned 1149 calories. It took 70 minutes and 10 seconds.

Ever run on a treadmill?

I've talked about podcasts as one way to occupy the mind while satisfying the body with a run. What do you do if you don't have your MP3 player?

I was in the US Army when I was younger. In Basic Training, we called cadence while we ran. Why do you call cadence? Several reasons. One is to assist you in strengthening your ability to breathe. One is to establish a running rhythm. The last is to engage the mind. Did you need to know the words? No, the DI would call them out and the platoon would repeat. That simple. However, there was a lot of difference between the first week of cadence and the final week of cadence.

Don't get the wrong idea. Don't go for the visual of me running on the tread mill and shouting out cadence. Doesn't happen. I use it as an example only.

I tend to do number games. Treadmills have readouts on their panels. My treadmill is a NordicTrack C2200. It has readouts for mileage, total machine mileage, total personal mileage, calories, incline position, carbohydrates, total time, pace and pulse. At first, I tried to track everything.

Most of the time now, though, I track my mileage (mostly in reverse) and the calories. It is easy to engage the mind to track numbers. A typical tread mill run of mine goes something like this:
1. 1/2 mile at 5.00 MPH
2. 1/2 mile at 5.50 mph
3. Repeat 1 & 2 for 3 miles.
4. 2.0 miles @ 5.50 mph
5. 2/10th mile at 7.50 mph
6. 1/10 mile at 6 mph
7. 1/10 mile at 5 mph
8. 1/10 mile at 4.0 mph.
That is a typical 5 1/2 mile run.

I check for a calorie count at the first .85 miles. That should give me 150 calories. Then I check at 1.75, 2.65. 3.55, 4.45, and finally at 5.35 miles.

Imagine you were near my treadmill as I was running. All of a sudden, I call out, "30, 70, 20, 55." Then I am quiet again. What ever did that mean? 30/100th of a mile completed, 70/100 to complete the next mile, 20/100 to go to the next pace, 55/100 to the next calorie check.

The numbers game changes, but the variations are pretty much similar.

What do the rest of you do?

(Oh Yeah! Only 4 days and I head to Moab with the Jeep and the running gear for a week!)

Monday, April 09, 2007

2007! Last week and a Jeep "Run"...

I am a participant in "The Tinkoff 1,000." It is a voluntary commitment, a resolution, to run at least 1,000 miles in 2007. As of today, I have completed 600 miles of that commitment.

Saturday, I ran 8 miles. Sunday, I ran 6 miles. Last week (Sunday through Saturday), I ran 46 miles.

Impressive? Maybe. I run to exercise. That is still my goal. We will see what happens this week.

I was supposed to attend a Jeep trail run on Saturday. When I woke on Saturday morning, it was snowing. I did not go. I would put that off until Sunday and do a longer run. When I woke up Sunday morning, it was snowing even harder and was very cold!

What the heck, though; I took the Mighty YJ out to try a trail. I had installed a brand new ARB locker into the new Ford 8.8 rear axle and wanted to try both of them out. I am leaving for an annual pilgrimage to Moab beginning next Saturday. I wanted to make sure that the Mighty YJ could do what I was about to put it through, so I headed up to a mountain gambling town known as Central City. I don't gamble much, but there is a great set of mountain trails above the city.

When I go on these trail runs, I usually run along side. It allows me to do some photography and talk to other drivers and exercise. Needless to say, I went a little ahead (mostly to direct the Jeep over the snowladen trail) but it was not a day to run the trail.

The man in denim is myself. The group was in the middle of winching the Toyota truck away from the tree line. We use a synthetic rope as opposed to a metal cable with a safety thimble instead of a hook on the end. It makes for a safer setup that you can stand close to without fear of a cable snapping and hurting you. Notice that the setup is pulling the back end of the Toyota out and onto the trail.

It was a fun time. Afterward, I went back to town and ate entirely too much for the Easter dinner.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Why is a podcast like a community?

I "talk" to people everyday that I have never met. That is a good thing!

How is it that I can do that? Through podcasting!

Podcasting is a true grass roots phenomenon. These are people that feel so strongly, that have such personal conviction, that they HAVE to share what they beleive with others. They do that by podcasting.

There are some slick, high cost productions out there in podcasting. There are also little guys that podcast. I've listened to them both. I much prefer the little guy.

I've told of my love for coffee. There are podcasts for home roasting. I am also an IT guy at my office. There are podcasts for that. I needed to lose weight and get my butt in gear! I sought out podcasts for that!

Through those podcasts, you have the ability to meet others that listen to the same podcasts that you listen to. They share the same interests and desires. Everyone needs a support group. You can develop one of your own or step into one that is ready-made for you. You can even do a podcast yourself!

On the "Dreadmill," I started to listen to Health and running podcasts. That assisted me in developing a desire to run and eat healthy. I continue to develop like-minded support through these groups.

One such small podcast is known as, "A Dieter's Life." You can find it on iTunes. I like the podcast and the core group of people that listen to it. If you need to develop a healthy diet or listen to others that have gone through what I am explaining you might listen, then join in on the discussion.

Starting next time, I'll talk more about how and how much I run.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

To occupy the mind...

I live in a suburb of Denver, Colorado. This life changing experience started in November of 2005. My time running outside did not last long. It gets cold outside here in Winter. I was forced to run inside.

Any of you that run know about treadmills. They are an excellent way to it done. They are also a very tedious way to get it done. Many refer to them as Dreadmills.

I did the running but it was difficult. At first, of course, my speed was not great but it took a long time running to fill an hour's time. You have to find something to occupy the mind while the body does the work.

I am a Safety Director where I work. I handle the Workers' Compensation files for my employer. Part of a manager's job is to control costs. I get invitations every year to investigate new WC clinics. Most have open houses with drawings for swag (giveaways). I attended one in which the giveaway was an Apple iPod Shuffle. In a week, I found out that I had won the iPod (but then I suspect that everyone who attended won an iPod). Neither here nor there, though. I had my hands on an iPod.

I need to mention that I am offered 'things' through my position in the company. I believe that everything I am offered is an attempt to sway my decision. I tell people offering me things that if I take it, it will be given to the owners of the company as they placed me in my position. What I get while on the job or representing the company is company property. It is not honorable to keep it.

This time I went to the owner and presented him with the iPod. He looked at it then looked at me. "Are you using your treadmill?" he asked me. I answered that I was. He said that he already had one and wanted me to keep the iPod. But only as long as I was keeping up the exercise. So for running outside or inside. I kept the iPod.

I downloaded Apple iTunes. I played around with a few podcasts. Everything from Astronomy (Astronomy a gogo) to Jailer stories ( to health and running.

I put some on the iPod. As I listened, the miles flew by under my feet. It was amazing. I might just be able to do this thing yet!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Getting down to it...

Now I was prepared for what MUST happen. From here on out, I was the one responsible for my health. I am a mature man at 52 years of age at the time that this was happening.

In addition to the diet and the exercise, I was also given 2 prescriptions. One is for Lisinopril to control my blood pressure. The other is for Lipitor to assist in controlling my cholesterol. I filled the prescriptions and made those a part of my regular regimen.

I work the swing shift and have for years. I love not getting up to an alarm clock. My mornings are free and are for me. It is a good thing. I was able to fit the exercise into my morning regimen rather easily. Please don't expect to call me or talk to me between 9:00 AM and 10:00 AM as I will not be available. That is my time devoted to exercise.

There were options available to me. The PA talked of running. Walking is better than nothing but the expectation was to run. I could swim. I could balance the exercise with strength training. Many options!

Somehow, for me, running clicked. I liked the freedom and the outdoor ability. I stuck with that. On inclement days, I would run on the old treadmill.

The treadmill that I had then was of age. I had bought it 15 or so years previously. Running on that was a challenge all of it's own. AND, how do you keep your mind engaged when the body is busy?

Podcasts was the answer. I have gone to Wikipedia for an explanation, "A podcast is a digital media file (or a series of such files) that is distributed over the Internet using syndication feeds, for playback on portable media players and personal computers.[1] Like 'radio', it can mean either the content itself or the method by which it is syndicated; the latter is also termed podcasting."

But how can a podcast help?

Lets look at that next time...

Monday, April 02, 2007

The Physician's Assistant

The week had passed. I returned to the Doctor's office. I took my room mate along with me. After all, it would be his commitment as well as mine (I do the cooking at the household).

I was given diet handouts explaining what the requirements of the diet entailed. There were menus for 2 weeks included. It would not be easy and I would have to plan out what to eat and how to balance my diet to make it work. Much less fatty ingredients, flours and sugars. Lower the amount of caffeine.

I am a home roaster of coffee. Nothings tastes as good to me as a cup of coffee. I have a home roaster that allows me to roast the green coffee beans for the taste that I like. I buy the green beans bulk and then roast them as I need them. Once upon a time in the USA every household rosted beans.

I also like ice cream. I grew up on it and have always liked it.

So, when the discussion got down to what would be allowed and what would not, those two items were on the list of have nots. I told the PA that we roast Arabic beans and not Robusta. The caffeine is definitely much lower in my home roasts. She consented to it, but very reluctantly. I would have to prove it to her. She said that the ice cream could be allowed but I would have to fit it into the diet under the parameters of the diet.

I would get one "Free" day every week for exercise. I would not have to exercise that day. The day was up to me but only one day per week.

I was also given one "Free" meal per week. I could eat what I wanted for that one free meal. I shouldn't go overboard, but there has to be some freedom in a diet like I was handed.

It was suggested that I go out and buy a "Calorie Counter" book. I was to record what I ate every day and the exercise that I engaged in.

Now it was up to me!!!