Category Archives: Clearwater

Starting off the New Year on the right foot

With 2014 well under way I’m starting off on the right foot. The wife and I made a stop this morning at the store after her 6 mile training run for a bit of shopping. I’m happy to report no “sweets” or “extra goodies” seemed to make their way into the cart as they would have in the past. Instead snacks high in fiber with low fat content made their way there and I’m perfectly happy with that. I chose to go this route to feed my sweet tooth but at the same time being more weight conscious.

snacks

The training run for the wife forced me to get out for bit as I rode along on the bike taking our normal route. While the wife is training for her next half marathon I’ve got a few smaller races coming up that I should be preparing for but being the “King” of procrastination I haven’t even begun. Over the next 2 months I’ll be running (1) 5k race, (1) 8k race and (1) 10K race plus the Warrior Dash. While I normally wouldn’t run this many races 2 are races I normally do yearly and the other 2 were last minute additions.

The 1st race on my list for 2014 is only a 5k but it’ll be a fun one. The wife and I decided to do the Color Run with some friends in Clearwater on January 26th and it looks like it’ll be a blast. While this race is an untimed run I’m sure I’ll still put forth an effort and try to run in a decent pace. One of the fun things about this event is every kilometer you get doused with a different color so by the end of the run you’ll be plastered with many different colors. For any of those looking to get a bit of exercise and have a lot of fun come on out and join us. Check out their site @ http://thecolorrun.com/ for more details.

My 2nd race of 2014 is February 1st and I’ll be joining up with some friends to take on the Warrior Dash in Lake Wales. While I’ve conquered this 5K in the past I’m most excited about taking on the challenge with my friend Bob and his wife. This will be his first event he’s running in and he picked a pretty fun (and muddy) one to kick it all off. While I don’t remember much about the one I previously ran, I know I’ll get really muddy and I froze my butt off because of the time of year.

 

WD Collage

The 3rd race of 2014 will be February 23rd and it’s the 8K Gasparilla run in Tampa. This is one of my yearly races as it was my first 8K race ever. I’ll admit I wasn’t thrilled about running an 8K but the wife wanted to do it so I decided to run with her. We also had a friend and her son come out and run with us. Once I started I actually enjoyed the run . I do remember being a tad bit cold up until the start of the race but shortly forgot about that after I started running. My time from last year was 1:05:59 so stay posted to see if I actually beat that from last year or I come up short.

 

Gasparilla

My last planned race actually falls on March 1st and is in Orlando. I’ll be heading up to Orlando with the wife to run the Best Damn Race and my first 10K ever. Last year in 2013, I ran the Best Damn Race in Safety Harbor and that was my first “Official” 5K I ran so that race will always be special to me. While I wasn’t sure how I’d do I managed to turn in a 38:25 for my first 5K. For anyone who’s ever thought of running a race and has never done so I’d highly recommend this one – it made me want to continue to run (not as much as the crazy wife, but in moderation). They do have Safety Harbor and Orlando this year so if anyone is interested in running either of those go to http://www.bestdamnrace.com/ and check them out. If you decide to register use the code NANCIC (all uppercase) for $5 off.

BDR

 

How has your 2014 started out so far? Which race was your first one or a special one you remember?

12 years ago

On this day 12 years ago at 11:00 the wife and I stood before a minister and exchanged our vows before our family and friends. While the ceremony was smaller due to the events of 9/11 we still had a great time with those who made it. Twelve years later I still see the Best Man as we work together and see most of the Groomsman on a regular basis. One even went on to become the Mayor of Oldsmar recently.

 

Bridal Party

wedding 2wedding

Today we are celebrating 12 years as husband and wife. Thru good times and bad we’ve been there to support each other and continue to do so. So how do we plan on spending our anniversary you may ask? Well that’s where it gets a bit odd as we chose to start off our anniversary with an 8 mile run (The wife ran and I rode my bike), but still we did it together.

 

Bridge before

Bridge 2

After a long morning of exercising while most others are still sleeping we decided to splurge and stop at Dunkin Donuts for some Pumpkin munchkins (evil, addicting and awesome all at the same time). We next came home and got the boys for our traditional Starbucks run where got our usual drinks. As far as what the rest of the days holds who knows. I’m hoping for a nice lazy day with a good nap and maybe a bit of TV.

 

Dunkin

Later this evening it’ll be Kobe’s Japanese Steakhouse for our traditional dinner with a bit of yummy yummy sauce and some silly paper hats. I know some people may say it’s silly but we love that place so we go on special occasions. I know she’ll be reading this so Happy 12th Anniversary…. I love you so much and look forward to many more years.

 

Final Pic

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done for an anniversary? What would be the perfect way to spend your anniversary?

Couch to 5K Week 4 Wrap Up

With week 4 of my Couch to 5K program coming to an end, I’ve officially passed the halfway mark and I’m well on my way to meeting my goal of running a full 5k. The training time for week 4 consisted of 31:30 training sessions of which approximately 16 minutes of that time was spent running. The additional running time doesn’t seem to have affected me and I’m starting to feel pretty confident about being to accomplish this goal. Below I’ve listed out the intervals for week 4 of the training program and it was definitely a chore but I’ve managed to work my way through it.

5 minute warm up

3 minute run

90 second walk

5 minute run

2.5 minute walk

3 minute run

90 second walk

5 minute run

5 minute Cool Down

I’ve started to notice little differences in activities I do. Activities that used to be hard for me based on their physical nature are now becoming easier. My endurance for running during my paintball scrimmages seems to be growing and the fatigue seems to be less of an issue at the end of the day.

bridge

How has your training helped with any activities you do? Have you noticed any changes in your endurance levels?

Couch to 5K Week 3 Wrap Up

Week 3 is officially in the books and I’m happy to say I’ve made it thru another week of the C25k program by Zen Labs. The intervals have changed slightly but nothing significant. Warm up and cool down still consist of the traditional 5 minute times. My first interval consisted of a 90 second jog followed by 90 seconds of walking. After that we moved on to a 3 minute jog followed by a 3 minute walk. The program is a 1 to 1 with all of its training which seems to help me with building my endurance for my ultimate goal. The biggest changes in my routine came with me being able to accommodate running outdoors for 2 of my 3 training days. Sunday’s run was at the Memorial Causeway which is our normal Sunday running place, but Tuesday ended up being a treadmill day. Thursday morning was a weird exception for me as I woke up early and ended up running in the AM as opposed to an afternoon run. I’ll admit the morning run was tough to get up to do but once I got outside I was fine. The day seemed to go much better as I wasn’t stressed about making time to run as I had already gotten it out of the way and made for what felt to be a great start to the day.

Outside

photo 4

photo 3

Where do you prefer to do your training? Do you prefer morning or Afternoon runs?

Couch to 5K Catch Up

For those who have been following my progress on the Couch to 5K, I’m a few days behind so I’ll do a wrap up of the past few days. Last week I was able to complete Week 2 Days 2 and 3 which obviously were an exact mirror of Day 1. I did change the experience a bit by doing one day outside and the other inside on the treadmill. I’ll have to admit even with as miserable it is out in the afternoon I still preferred to be outdoors. The heat was a tad bit unbearable but still worth it in the end over the treadmill. Treadmill training seems to have a negative effect on me; yes, it’s convenient but definitely not the same as being outdoors. Day 2 and 3 workouts were the same but I could tell a definite difference with indoor training vs. outdoors. The indoor training, while convenient, lacked the mental stimulation that you get from outdoors. The heat, humidity and over all change of scenery is what I require to keep me motivated.

Week 3 Day 1 did bring some changes as I’m starting to run/walk in longer intervals and it definitely feels a bit different but in a good way. I’ve noticed on my running portions that I’m able to pace myself and not feel any winding or fatigue from the increased intervals. The one thing I’m sure of is I’m definitely seeing the progress and I’m confident I’ll make my goal of running my first full 5K.

bridge

sunday run

What type of training have you done in the past to train for any events? How did it help you prepare?

Couch to 5K Week 2 Day 1

This past Sunday brought me to the beginning of week 2 of the Couch to 5K program and this week was a slight modification of week 1. Week 2 brought an additional 30 seconds of running per interval and also an additional 30 seconds of walking for each interval. The change on the running portion was so subtle that I didn’t even notice the additional time and it felt great. Even the additional walking time was hardly noticeable on this training run. The total training time for this run was 31 minutes and which was just a minute over last week’s training sessions. Week 1 and 2 of the Couch to 5K consisted of the following workouts that I’ve listed below.

Week 2 Day 1

Week 1 workout: 8 minutes jog time and 12 minutes walking

5 Minute Warm up

(8) 60 Second Jogs

(8) 90 Second Walk

5 Minute Cool down

Week 2 workout: 9 Minutes jog time and 12 minutes walking

5 Minute Warm up

(6) 90 Second Jogs

(6) 120 Second Walk

5 Minute Cool Down

Week 1 didn’t appear to be that bad even though I ran 2 of the 3 days on the treadmill due to weather. The beginning of every week is run at the the Memorial Causeway in Clearwater and I wished I could do all 3 days there but time doesn’t permit me to during the week. Week 2 felt pretty much the same for me even though week 2 only added 1 additional minute of running. The intervals were longer and there were fewer, but I noticed my pace seemed a bit faster on the runs.

photo 3 photo 4

photo 2

What training have you done to complete your first 5K? Was it a schedule you created yourself?

Couch to 5k Week 1 Day 1

Confusion has probably set in on those who just read the “Couch to 5K Week 1 Day 1” title as I’ve already ran several 5k races. With taking as much time off as I have and some knee problems starting to progressively get worse I’ve decided to start from square one. My first 5k I ran in February 2013 with minimal training. Even though I did well on my time, I didn’t totally run the 5k which is now my goal. I’d like to run a 5k from start to finish and have a respectable time. After speaking to several people who had never ran and trained they all suggested the Couch to 5k so I thought I’d give it a try. I went thru iTunes and found a C25K – 5K trainer from Zen Labs and that’s the app that I’ll be using throughout my 5k training.

photo

Looking thru the workouts it’ll be a 3 day a week program for a total of 8 weeks. Week 1 day 1 was 30 minute workout with walking/running intervals. The program started with a 5 minute warm up then into a 1 minute run. The 1 minute run was followed by a 90 second walk then repeat the process. Day 1 wasn’t too bad and I feel as if I’m off to a good start.

6

5

So I chose to start Week one Day 1 at my most favorite place in the world (sensing a bit of sarcasm) – the Memorial Causeway. I say that jokingly of course as I actually do love that bridge. We met several years back and it’s been a love/hate relationship. I love the bridge and the challenge it offers but my knees hate it. Going forward the first day of the week for the entire program will be done at the bridge but days 2 and 3 will be done in the neighborhood as time doesn’t always permit me to go to the bridge. One thing is for sure, by the time the Best Damn Race comes around in 2014 I’ll be able to say that was the first Damn race I totally ran.

photo 1

photo 3

photo 4

What type of training have you done to prepare for your running? What type of progression have you seen over the years as you continue to train?

Memorial Causeway and Fitness

Living in Florida we have the luxury of having beautiful weather about 90% of the time which I’m now learning to take advantage of. Cardio is key to fitness and who wants to be strapped to a treadmill when you can be out exploring and enjoying the Florida weather, so that’s what the wife and I have decided to do. Some of you may know but in April she’ll be doing the Iron Girl Half Marathon which involves two bridges. Many people say “Oh no big deal it’s just a bridge” but for those who run can tell you, they are far from it. The wife wanted to mix it up a bit and train for her upcoming half marathon by involving some Florida scenery along the Memorial Causeway. We decided on the Memorial Causeway for many reasons which include location, the fact that it’s one of the bridges she’ll be running next month, length and the incline. Those features mixed in with the gorgeous scenery make for some great times and excellent cardio.

So what I’ve found out is inclines are no joke and an excellent way to help increase your cardio and overall fitness. The wife is using them to help with her half marathon training and I’ve been using them to help improve my cardio for paintball. The rundown of our bridge cardio was very simple, we wanted to go over and back three times in an hour. The total mileage for this after picking our start/end point totaled 3.77 miles. Attempt number one brought us a time of 58:05 which given the fact it was our first time and were trying to gauge how we would handle it. Keeping in mind this is a run/walk activity I feel the number was fair but we always strive to do better.

The second attempt seemed a bit easier, not much, but a bit easier. We found we were able to run a bit more at a slower pace but we were still running. After everything was said and done our time came in at 51:16 so we managed to shave almost seven minutes off of our previous time. We found the incline running to be a bit easier, not much but just a little bit. Needless to say we were pleasantly surprised when we saw this change in our times.

Our most recent attempt seemed harder for me personally, but then again I hadn’t done any cardio in over a week. It’s funny how it takes forever to get into shape but only takes a short time to fall out of shape. With that being said the wife and I were able to finish this time in 49:01, which means we were able to shave off a little over 2 minutes off of our run/walk for the week. Every trip seems to bring us the results we strive for and I’ve had others express interest in joining. Every trip back seems to bring us closer and closer to reaching the cardio fitness we both desire. Although we have different end results in mind, the road to get there is still pretty much the same path.

photo 2

photo 1

photo 3

What have you been doing to increase your cardio? Do you or prefer the gym or exploring the natural sites of where you live?