New running group in Dublin, OH


It’s been a long time since I blogged, and to be honest a long time since I’ve run much. Life has got in the way a bit and right now we’re busy prepping my house to sale but quite frankly the weather this winter has been awful and has not cooperated with running at all.
However I did see that there is a new local running group, Living Fit Columbus,  that meets in Dublin, OH just down the road from me. Their run times actually clash with the turtles running group on Thursday night and the CRC’s Saturday morning run but if you live in Dublin, this might be a more convenient location and/or a change of scenery.

Birthday race – Get Pumped for Pets 10k


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I’m surprised that it was so long between posting an update to the website but the weather has quite frankly not been very inspiring for running. I had been looking forward to running the Get Pumped for Pets 10k run in Maryland with my girlfriend after we made it a destination race for a birthday vacation together.  The race was to race money for the Animal Resource Foundation that rescues animals from shelters and was between our birthdays. Although we didn’t train for the race, I felt able to run a 10k – but this was going to be the longest I’d run since the stress fracture last year. The day before the race we stopped into the shelter to see if we could pick up our packets early and ended up seeing and petting some of the very cute animals – it was a good job we were on holiday or I think there is a very strong chance we’d have come home with a cat or a puppy (or two).

Sunday morning – the day the clocks moved forward an hour, we got up early and got ready for the race. Our hotel was about 2 mins from the start which made losing an hour of sleep a little more bearable.

Before the race we stopped to take some photos for the Running with Spatulas website competition – much to the amusement of the girl we asked to take our photos. The conversation of “Are those spatulas? Yes. Why are you running with spatulas?” was quite amusing and a good conversation starter.

Spatula Runners

Spatula Runners

I was also wearing my gofaster batman socks that my amazing girlfriend got me for christmas.

Note the capes on the back of the socks.

Note the capes on the back of the socks.

The go faster capes didn’t actually work as I ended up running just over an hour – 1hr and 6 seconds which is slower than last year, but this was the longest run after the stress fracture and not that much slower so I was actually pretty pleased with the result. The race was an out an back route and very flat but unfortunately I still had to walk a couple of times during the run which shows I need to get back to some serious training. At the 6 mile beep on the garmin I looked at the watch and saw I had 90 seconds to run the last .2 miles. As I sprinted towards the finish line I caught up with a woman who had been just in front of me and we came running fast into the finish line. Brandi got some video (which I haven’t had time to convert to the computer yet) which looks like I was hardly moving at all as we came round the corner, yet I felt like I was really sprinting in at the end.

The official results was 1hr 6 seconds,  54/106 runners, 4/7 age group, 9.42 pace.

The only other time we got to run on the vacation was on the beach, in the freezing wind as we went looking for a geocache. I saw the beach and knew I had to do a very short run on the beach – but I really don’t recommend running on the beach in brand new shoes, jeans, snowboarding jacket and a wooly hat Running on a Maryland Beach I can’t wait until my next vacation and a chance to run on the beach properly.

Have you ever gone on vacation for a race? Any recommendations for a destination race?

First 2013 race(s) is now paid for.


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Well I took the plunge today and signed up for the 2013 Scioto Miles races that should hopefully get me ready for the Capcity half marathon in May 2013. Check out the teamnames below.

Cookies and Crumpet team

These two races also come with a pair of “free” shoes that retail for the cost of the race itself. Although the Brooks Pure would probably not be my first choice in shoes, it does mean I get to try out a new pair of running shoes pretty cheaply. I’ll be torn about wearing them in training for the race though as I don’t want to ruin any training for the race so maybe I’ll end up using them after the half or on the treadmill.

In the meantime, my running has been slacking – I enjoyed last weeks Turtle Thursday but have been too tired to run this week – must squeeze a run in somehow this week. I think the weather will be nice on Saturday so maybe a longer run and maybe even get up to 5 miles.

(Cookies and Crumpets is the nickname that the Turtles have given Brandi and I and I think it’s a great name)


4 mile run!


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Yesterday was a pretty significant milestone. I went running with my usual Thursday night friends – the Turtle Thursdays group. It was the first time I have run over 4 miles since July 22nd which is an incredibly long, long  time ago. Although I had run part of last nights route before, we had turned around at the 1.5 mile point so there were a couple of points on the trail last night when I realised just how long ago it has been since I last saw that piece of scenery. July 19th is actually when I last saw the 2.5 mile turn around point and had done the entire route.

It was also the first time I had been there since Brandi (another runner from the group) and I started dating so naturally there was a little bit of teasing which was fun, although it was a good job it was dark out so the blushes weren’t *too* obvious. It was really nice to see the rest of the group happy for us both.

My knee seems to be healing up nicely now – I’m nervous about overdoing it and doing damage so I’m being very cautious in increasing the distance. It didn’t hurt at all yesterday and I felt like I could have carried on at that pace for several miles further but I had to keep the distance in check as I’m only increasing about 1 mile a week. Currently I’m not bothered about speed as I’m more focused on slowly bringing the distance up to double digits and also I want to ensure I run with Brandi where possible. However my solo runs will be faster than last night – I’ll just consider them my speed workouts for now 😉

We do have a goal of a 10 mile race in March and will be signing up for the Scioto Miles training plan (This year you get “free shoes” instead of last years jacket) as this was a real confidence booster in preparing for the half marathon and if the first run and the 10 mile race goes well, I’ll be signing up for my second half marathon – the 2013 Capital City Half Marathon that will be held in May.

Have you signed up for any 2013 races yet or should I say do you have the budget for any more races in 2013?

Merry Christmas everyone!


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Apparently the weather outside was really nice so before I went off for a run I had a banana to fuel up or to be more accurate I had half a banana and had to share it with someone. As there are not many photos of me on this blog, I thought I’d take the time to wish everyone a Happy Christmas from Basil and myself.

It was a really nice run out although cold. If you haven’t done so yet, and plan to go for a run today, wear some gloves – I forgot mine, again – I need a pair of idiot mittens so I don’t forget them.
This was my first Christmas day run – as I ran through the deserted streets I remember Mum and Dad dragging me out for a Christmas afternoon walk as a kid. I hated those long walks, but here I am going for a run.
This time last year I had started running but was waiting for surgery on my meniscus so it was really nice to be back on my feet and out running again. I saw a grand total of two people out and 1 car. Of course the only two people I saw were runners. Naturally I waved hi, so it was a good job I didn’t have my idiot mittens on after all and smacked myself in the face with the other hand 😉

Anyone else get(ting) a run in today – Before or after the big meal? Did your parents make you wait a torturously long time to open all the presents like after Lunch, walk and a cup of tea? – just mine???? oh….


Perfectly Normal Behaviour *


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Avg. Pace
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A good run around Thaddeus Kosciusko Park in Dublin. I really like this park as it has a gentle slope and has a mix of gravel path and the ability to head off into the woods. As usual I did a clockwise loop on the gravel path for 1/2 mile and then headed across the field and into the woods for a slosh through the mud. Yet again the weather was great for December, I was wearing shorts and my Columbus Running Company bright green shirt. The ground through the woods was pretty muddy due to the rain we’ve had this week but still firm enough that I wasn’t going to slide all the way down the hill.

I got to the pond, looped around and headed back to the main trail and completed the 2 mile loop on gravel. It’s nice to see that the gravel path seems to be holding up and is a nice offroad 1 mile loop (the woods adds another mile to the loop).

I finished the first loop and as I’m still slowly increasing mileage, I headed back out on the loop and took a diversion off one of the paths intending to cut through the middle of the loop and cut it in half. Instead the path I chose for some reason dropped down into a valley, over a stream and back up the other side and then back to the path I had left. I therefore decided just to run back the way I had came but made a mental note that next time I’ll use that side path as it gives you more of a workout (not a big one mind) going down the hill and back up again than staying on the gentle incline.

When I made it back to the car I had done 2.6 miles in just under 28 minutes. A fun run, not rocket fast, but I’m going to blame that on recovery and my first muddy run where I had to slow down a bit to navigate through the puddles (the deep/muddy ones at least) (an ok I admit it – a couple of walking breaks too)

I did regress to my childhood as I splashed through some of the puddles and sure enough my socks were a very dark brown when I took my shoes off but I did get an impressive set of splashes up the legs.

After the run I tried to take a picture of myself with the shelter in the background and the bright green Columbus Running Company shirt I was wearing. Unfortunately the fact that I didn’t get to sleep until 3am this morning and then up at 7am  – makes me have a weird fixed eye gaze in this photo – but you can see the brightness of the shirt. So after the photo was taken I headed off to Kroger for some weekend shopping and whilst I was walking around the aisles I had a funny experience.

I was looking for some enchilada flavoured soup that I’d had a couple of days ago, had my running shorts and the bright shirt on and was looking puzzled in the aisle as I could not find this soup anywhere.  This woman came up to me, tried to squeeze by me and so I moved the cart over and she said she liked the shirt – it was nice and bright. Seeing as though I’m in my running shorts, shoes and a running shirt, I assumed she knew I was a runner, laughed and said that it was so I don’t get shot as it’s hunting season. She looked at me blankly as if to say “why would someone shoot at you in Kroger?”. I explained that you have to take precautions when running through the woods.  Yet again I got a blank “there are no woods in kroger”. I explained, Not *here* – I was running in the woods earlier and the shirt makes me more visible. At that point – the penny dropped for her – she hadn’t realised I was a runner and was just liking the brightness of the shirt I was wearing (or trying to make conversation).

We laughed and carried on shopping – that was the most bizarre conversation I’ve had in Kroger for a long while and not exactly the most successful one with a woman 😉

*At Least For Runners –  isn’t it perfectly normal behaviour to wear bright clothes so they don’t get shot and go to Krogers?

1. What is the weirdest conversation you’ve had in the grocery store and do you go shopping in your work out clothes or go home and change first?

I don’t mind shopping in my work out gear but if I’m wet from rain or a sweaty run, I do avoid the freezer aisle as wet clothes are not pleasant and in the case of sweat I do towel off and use deodrant first.

2. What other Perfectly Normal Behaviours are applicable to runners?

I’d have to say running in the road rather than on the footpath. Used to bug me as a nonrunner to see runners doing that, but I know the tarmac surface is a lot kinder than the footpath – less tripping hazards to start with. However the camber of the road and crazy drivers does offset this benefit. Give me a trail through the woods any day.

A night run, and in the rain too.


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Last Tuesday night, the Columbus Running Company had a social evening run sponsored by Mizuno with every attendance getting a free gift which was a pair of running socks.

The weather at 4pm on Tuesday night was horrible – it was absolutely chucking it down and I was mad – I had been looking forward to this run for ages and it looked like it was going to be miserable. The plus side was that it would be my first real opportunity to run in the rain.  However as it turned out, most of the rain stopped by the time the run started.

As I got out of the car I clipped my new Roosport to my shorts and walked to the store, was just about to open the door when the Roosport fell off my shorts. Not a good start. I didn’t bother messing with it any further and put it in my running jacket pocket. I switched shoes to a pair on bright green Mizuno’s, picked up my free socks and figured that at least if it does chuck it down later I can switch back to my shoes and I have a free pair of socks to change into.  I didn’t win the drawing for the gloves and we soon formed up by time and started to run.

Mizuno Run at the Columbus Runing Company


I’m at the back right of this photo – initially I didn’t think it was me due to the mysterious green glow, but funnily enough that is my Garmin back-light.  The previous week’s run I ran over my planned distance as I was unable to get the backlight to show whilst running so I could work out if it was time to turn around. I obviously got it working as this is the back-light shortly after I started the watch.

It seemed that everyone was doing sub 9 minute miles – there were only 3 of us who were running slower than that, so everyone shot off and I ran most of the way out with one guy but he turned around shortly before the 1 mile mark. So I had company for the first 0.9 miles and at the 1 mile beep I ran to the end of the road and then headed back by myself – so much for a social run!

When I got back to the store after about 20 minutes I was pretty wet from sweating (I probably didn’t need the jacket to keep warm as it was actually 51degrees after the run) and the rain. A shopper who had been at the start looked at me and asked if I had finished already with a look of amazement.  That made me laugh as the run was a 5 mile run and I was back in 20 minutes or so, making it a 4minute mile for 5 miles – a nice compliment though 😉

The Mizuno (and my Glycerin 9’s) have been weird to run in lately. Due to the stress fracture in my knee, I know I’m not running evenly on both feet and I can hear the difference on the pavement – my left leg doesn’t make much noise, but the right leg slaps the pavement with every step which is most annoying. Initially I thought it was the glycerin’s but the mizuno’s did a similar thing. I’ve not run in my old NewBalance shoes recently – I used them before thanksgiving and was not aware of any issues, but I was running on gravel paths as opposed to tarmac so the noise was not as noticeable.  The Mizuno’s were pretty comfortable although they were a bit stiff across the top of the toe and I could feel them rubbing a bit as my feet flexed on impact.

Thanks to Mizuno for sponsoring the run and thanks to Columbus Running for putting on the event and congratulations on being one of the top 50 running stores in the country – a well deserved honour.

Starting to run again – and it feels so good.


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Last Friday was my first day of getting the official all clear to start running again. The doc had told me to take it slowly, back off if I was in any pain and don’t overdo it.  I was busy on Friday so didn’t get a chance to run, but on Saturday the weather was nice out so I decided to go for a short run. There is a little wooded trail just behind the library that is about 1/2 mile and overlooks a ravine with waterfall and I try to run this little loop as part of my Dublin runs whenever I can. I thought this would be a good first run to try. The run went well although my left leg felt stiff and I had to adjust my stride but it was great to be running in shorts and a tshirt in November. This week my ex brother in law (feels weird calling him my ex) was in town for thanksgiving and as he’s a runner we met up to go running – twice. The first time we did a loop of another park. This park is totally in the shade and one of my favourites for running in the winter and it looked quite different this time of the year. The advantage of this place is that the loop around the park is on a gravel trail and is a mile long, but I’ve found an extra 1/2 mile track to run that is mainly trails through the woods – perfect for the soft ground (at this time of year) that helps with the healing process.

So when we started the run, I warned him that I might be doing the one mile depending on my leg, but after the first half mile, my leg had loosened up and I felt good so we headed off down the trail through the woods.  We kept up a decent pace and at the end of the 2mile loop I really wanted to do it again, but I had to hang back and take the increase in distance slowly 😉 Yet again the weather was gorgeous – warm enough to run in shorts and tshirt again although this time the lungs definitely felt the cooler air but it just felt so good to be outside (and I had the day off work too which helps.)

Thursday we met up for our own Thanksgiving Turkey day trot. Last year I had hoped to do Dublin’s Flying Feather 4 mile race but on that morning I could struggled to walk .1 miles and later found out that I had torn my meniscus. This year I wouldn’t have been able to (safely) run 4 miles due to my other knee, but I decided to wear last years shirt anyway and we headed off to Antrim Lake.  I’d never run there before so it was nice to find a new location. We did two 1.2 mile laps around the lake – the first passed quickly, I had to take a walking break mid way through the second lap and struggled for the second half. The good news was that I wasn’t struggling due to the knee but more because I felt unfit and out of breath.  I was slightly mad because I was hoping the gym would keep the fitness level up – however when I looked at the pace on the watch I realised we had just run an average of under 9min mile pace and that included the walk – our normal pace was in the mid 8’s – I hadn’t run that fast before I was injured so it was no wonder I was out of breath! Yet again the weather was gorgeous – as we walked back to the car I remarked how nice it was – warm enough to have a thanksgiving picnic.  This finished off a great first week of running – great weather, company and results.

This morning I decided to not get up early and do the Saturday morning run as I wanted to give my leg just a little more rest (it was stiff and slightly painful after running each day but not too bad). I’m glad I did though, as when I got up and looked out of the window it was snowing – a real turn around from the great weather we have had and most definitely not shorts and tshirt weather anymore.

I am looking forward to getting back to the Turtle Thursday group and the other group runs – Monday I see the doctor again – hopefully for the last time, but we’ll see what he says.