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Showing posts from August, 2012

The Wall

Today, my dad and I built an obstacle course training wall.  This has been a theoretical project for some time now, but since the Tough Mudder is in eight weeks and its high time I learn to climb a wall, I decided to get my dad involved in the project because, well, I don't have to explain, it just gets done.  That's a great thing about dads in general, but especially about mine.

So, I looked at a couple of plans, but the nagging thought in the back of my mind was my neighbor Brett who is one of our team members and is six foot something significant and probably weighs at least 220 lbs.  Anything I built would have to be able to withstand the possibility of him running at it full speed and hurling himself over it.  So, we needed a substantial base and a good amount of weight.

We went with this design, that we pretty much figured out in the aisles of Home Depot.  These are the materials:

6 - 8 ft. 4x6 (two cut in half, two cut in half with 45 degree cuts on each end)
10 - 8 ft…

My feet hurt

I'm quite new to distance running.  I don't exactly like it yet, but I'm getting there.  I actually said, "let's do a short run, like five or six miles" other day.  If anyone had used "short run" and "five or six miles" in the same sentence to me a few months ago, I would have died laughing.  And yet, here I am.

I mentioned a few posts ago how I was taking the barefoot approach to running and felt it was better for my hips.  I really like my Merrell trail glove shoes and feel much more comfortable running in them than my traditional running shoes.  Alas, I am a beginner runner and a distance runner all at the same time and after a 10 mile road run (for which my shoes are NOT prescribed) my feet are really starting to hurt.  And then I ran 9.5 miles of trail on Monday, complete with roots, rocks, hills, etc.

Now, I do have a decent knowledge of the human body, and despite my general aversion to running, I do have a fundamental understandin…

11 Weeks Out

All right Team GeriAtrocities!  The Tough Mudder is in eleven weeks and its time to finish up our base training and get more specific.  Two posts ago, I talked about the obstacles and what the general fitness needs are going to be.  I now want to get even more specific about what we'll be doing over the next several weeks to get ready to take on this challenge.  This is a significant challenge and the bulk of our base training needs to be in place by eight weeks out.  At eight weeks out, we can only work with what is already in place, we can't significantly increase strength or endurance.  Our main goal will be to hone skills and mitigate weaknesses.

Distance Running:  The race is eleven miles and even though we will only run three of those miles continously, we need to be able to run the total distance.  Some of us already can, some of us are struggling to get there.  Our bodies need to know what eleven miles feels like and have the endurance, stamina, tendon strength, and …

Shoes and Stones

I was camping in the mountains with my family a few weeks ago.  We were staying next to a lovely river that was full of crawfish and good for tubing so we spent a lot of time in the water.  I mainly served as kid-catcher as they came down river in their inner tubes so they wouldn't end up in the next town, so I decided I'd make good use of my time.  I did this by testing out my newish running shoes for their ability to keep me from falling down and not get weighed down with mud and water at the Tough Mudder.  This happened to me at the Warrior Dash and it was both annoying and  made running really hard.  For that reason, I decided to go with a more minimalist shoe for this Tough Mudder training and found a Vibram style shoe by Merrell that didn't have toes.  I don't like the toes, mainly cause the toes provide more surface area for stinky feet germs.  But, I digress.  I bought these shoes back in the Spring because if you're going to learn to run long distances, y…

Doubt and Fear

When training for something you've never done before its easy to get overwhelmed.  People say all the time "you never know what you're capable of until you try it" and that can be inspiring.  At the same time, there are powerful emotions that keep us from attempting new and challenging things outside of comfort zones.  As a mostly general fitness type with a strength bias, it wasn't that far out of my grasp to run a 5K, do a Warrior Dash, or even compete in a weightlifting meet.  But, in the grand scheme of things, they aren't that hard.  I can jog a 5K any day of the week and it won't hurt me nor has it ever occurred to me to run it as fast as possible.  At a weightlifting meet, I'm in control of my attempts and if I don't feel like lifting a certain amount, I don't have to.  My approach has been to train as much as I can, and perform as well as I can on game day.

But, lately that's not been the case.  When I registered for the Falls Fest…