Miles for Smiles

In typical me fashion, it’s been a while. Between work, training, and life in general it’s really hard to find the time to post anything, and I look really hard for it too. Time is an elusive little bugger.

Theres a lot going on right now. The middle east is imploding, mother nature is apparently still holding a grudge against Japan, and I’m going for a little jaunt from Columbia SC to Folly Beach. I can’t figure out why earth continues to unleash its fury on the land of the rising sun, but if there is any country that’s prepared for quakes, it is Japan. However, there’s really not much you can do when a virtual wall of water is knocking on your front door. One cubic foot of water is equivalent to about 62 lbs of force. Multiply that by a gazillion and you’ve got devastation no matter what you do I’m afraid. I’ve been in touch with nearly all of my friends over there, I’m happy to report that all are ok, physically anyhow. During the few months that I spent there, I taught at a school a couple hundred miles away, just south of Tokyo proper. Though the time that I spent there was brief, I still feel some sense of connection to the country. I’m absolutely certain that Japan and it’s people will bounce back from this tragedy. I mean, if it is one thing the Japanese are good at.

The turmoil in the middle east seems to be worsening by the day. Now we’re dropping $600,000 bombs all over Libya. I’m not going to get into this too much and start taking political sides. It’s a difficult situation and there are valid points to be made all around. Whether you agree with the course of action that the US and UN are taking or not, I think we’re all pretty weary of conflict at this point. I did find it amusing when Gaddafi and the embattled Libyan government called for a cease fire the day after we began military operations. Of course you’re calling for a cease fire, we just blew everything up that you could fire! Our top figure heads have stated that we are not attempting to kill Gaddafi. As one ex navy commander put it “We are not targeting Gaddafi himself, but if he happens to be located at any designated military target, that’s his problem” Well, we did blow the hell out his compound so I guess we we’re just assuming he was out getting groceries that day.

Hmm…nearly two months gone and I come back with two paragraphs of doom and gloom. Nice. As for news on the home front, I’m running in the 2nd Annual Palmetto 200! It’s a relay race and I’m running on a team of 11 people. Our captain is Lael, who is the wife of my good friend Michael McKay who is the base camp PA on AW. She’s crazy about running and knew that I was a fellow psycho as well, and recruited me about 2 months ago. I’m super stoked and have been training like mad. It’s been 1 full year since my ankle sprain, and I’m finally feeling like I’m getting back into some really good form. True, I did knock out the Charleston Marathon in About 4 hours, 00:01:32 will live in infamy, but truthfully I was in the hurt zone for the majority of that race, and I’m really looking forward to getting back to the point where it’s not so much an effort for me.

The Palmetto 200 starts at 6am on Friday April 8th in Columbia SC, and over the course of 30 some hours, we make our way down to Folly Beach here in Charleston. Team members go through a rotation, each taking a leg of varying distances. I think I will be running 23-30 miles total, and I feel very ready to tackle that, and hopefully even with a little speed. I’ve changed up my training to get my body adjusted to running multiple times throughout the day. Some days I will get up early and knock out a few miles before work, then I’ll try to squeeze a few more in at lunch, and then get a few more in after work.

I’ve also been getting a fair amount of weight training in. Fortunately our on set medic created a little gym for us at the stages so I hit that up pretty frequently. He set me up with this circuit interval training routine. I wear a weighted 40lb vest, and run up and down 10 flights of stairs, then I do 4 circuits of 20 squats, 10 curl bar lifts (62lbs) 2 flights of stairs with 30lb dumbbells, and end with 10 military presses with the curl bar. I try to knock all that out in 12 minutes or less. It’s the best 12 minute workout I’ve ever had, and great to do if you’re short on time. I’ve noticed huge improvements in my overall endurance and a big increase in my respiratory capacity.

I’ve also been started taking a daily glutamine supplement. I’ve been reading up on the benefits of glutamine and the role it plays in the human body. It’s one of the 9 essential amino acids that works to create protein, which is essential for recovery. If you’re not a crazy runner, your body creates all the glutamine it needs. But if you find yourself lacing up more than the average bear, your body depletes glutamine rather quickly and thus you risk having your muscles go into a prlonged catabolic state. Your body needs a little help bouncing back and that’s where the glutamine supplement really comes through. I’ve noticed a measurable difference in my recovery period. After long runs I wake up the next day feeling like I really haven’t taken a step. I’ve also been using my self as guinea pig for a variety of other new recovery products and sports drinks. Maybe I will do a review of everything I’m trying out on my next post…….so check back in 2018 for that?

Anyhow, we’re about 3 weeks out from the race and I couldn’t be more excited if I tried. We had a great team run last week. Everyone is really strong, even those are fairly new to the sport. We did a 9.5 mile run and we we’re exactly slouching either. Everyone was really solid. Our team name is Miles for Smiles. We are benefitting ECCO, which is an organization here in Charleston that helps provide dental and medical treatment for those can’t quite swing it.

MapMyRun has this app and feature for the iPhone where you can be live, and your friends can track your progress live on their phones or via the website. I’m going to test this out soon, and hopefully we can get it set up so that if you want to, you can follow our progress!

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~ by glennikin on March 23, 2011.

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