About This Blog

As time permits, in-depth musings on myriad subjects will be posted. Abbreviated adages will be announced via Twitter.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


Re-surfacing seems to be the flavor of the moment, 'round these parts. Many stretches of my favorite riding routes are torn up, being replaced with state favorite chip-seal, which is akin to riding over a cheese grater. On top of that (well, not literally, for I'm sure it'd be an improvement), the tracks at both schools are inaccessible, as both fields are being re-surfaced with artificial turf. Yea, that it'll conserve water; boo, in that it's eliminated my ability to run track on Thursday mornings. Instead, I've been running Liiiiiive Oak the past couple of weeks. This morning, I opted for the shorter route (out & back, as opposed to the full loop through Cibolo...which, incidentally, turns out to be just over half-a-mile longer but does keep me from having to cross 3009), and it was good.

The Polar kept me aware of where my ticker was ticking, so I was able to get close to gunning it for the whole 3.44 miles. Total time for the run was 24:35, which figured out to be a 7:08 mile. While not anything to really write home about, the only thing that really kept me from going longer was time -- I had to get my butt home, showered, and to work. Saturday's 5k is looking to be a pretty good workout for me, even if I have no hopes in winning it.

There's a new shop in town: Trisition Area. SA's first tri-specific shop (okay, there's Soler's, but that's in Helotes and is way too far for me to drive; Trisition is on the way to N---'s). I paid a visit to them and subsequently paid them some coin for some new racing shoes.

I've seen the Zoot running shoes making their rounds in Slowtwitch, the trade mags, and the like, but was curious to try a pair for myself. The sales folk said they weren't good for anything more than a half, but, as IMWI is over a year out, even if it turns out to be more than a pipe dream, I'll be due for new shoes before then, anyway. Besides, Trisition gave me the option of doing one run in them as a demo; Saturday's 5k should prove perfect.

This post is beginning to look mighty incoherent, so I think I'll take that as my cue to bugger off and go to bed. I've ~100 pages left in 1984, so I'll go work on that in order to drift off to sleep. I'll pop back in on Saturday for an update on how I faired in the 5k and the follow-up ride out to Sattler with D---. Hope you could make sense of what I wrote, but, in even if you couldn't, thanks for reading.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A List of Demands

It's coming up on 4:30 in the morning, and I have been awake for the past hour. With no hint of sleeping returning to me, I thought it best to rouse myself and get some grading done. Thus far, the backpack still sits in the living room, untouched since being put there nearly an hour ago. I am the picture of productivity.

Actually, it's not been that bad. I did get my checkbook reconciled and also did some reading up on reasons to not train with a heart rate monitor. There aren't any. Instead, I was just being a whiny boy when complaining about the additional (non-visible) gear necessary to go out & train. I guess wearing the HRM strap isn't too big of a deal...will need to monitor my bike mileage more closely, though. So, the question now becomes, what do I do with the two, week-old Specialized SpeedZone Sport wireless cycling computers? eBay or Craig's List, I suppose.

Last night's 2s ride was a tad more intense than I was expecting. There are some really fast guys showing up to the school, now; I am not one of them. One does claim to be a triathlete, but I'm honestly not sure (or caring, for that matter); I'm just left wondering if the Tuesday night ride really is the best use of my training time. Yes, it is tradition, but I'm not wanting to become the local pariah who can't cycle worth a flip. Then again, I think I've already become that: A Triathlete: Jack of all trades; master of none.

Those papers aren't going to grade themselves, so I suppose I'll get crackin' on them. In consideration of how full my calendar is for the rest of the week, this is likely the best chance I'll have for free grading time, so I should best use it. Stay tuned, faithful reader, to find out just how successful the grading was (no bets, please; my self-esteem is low enough, right now), what was transpired at the pre-construction meeting regarding the Parkway, and how my appointment at Apple to exchange my Shuffle was (Shuffle died on me during my run this past Sunday; grrr!). Thanks for reading.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Quality Time

Three days, and that was barely enough for this Memorial Day weekend. Granted, it was one day more than your garden variety weekend, but I'd also been spoiled by having school wrapped up and put to bed by this point; I've still another two weeks before I can sing my lullabies for this year. Poor, poor me.

And just [what] was the weekend? A whole lot of quality time with N--- , including a brick out at Boerne Lake again (I ever be able to swim out there without gale-force winds one way or the other?), followed by a few days of house & dog sitting for some friends of hers. The bad part was they live way out from city limits, which I typically would not consider bad, but for the price of gas...and the fact they'd been killing rattlesnakes by the gross the past few months.; fortunately, the weekend was snake-free. The good part about house-sitting is they had satellite, which meant TV. More to the point: TV at a time when N--- & I could just veg out in front of it. So, we did.

Saturday was, by far, the best day. Silver Stars played Seattle and whupped up on 'em summin' fierce. On the ice, it was Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals, where Detroit shut out Pittsburgh 4-0. Incredible hockey. Rewinding to the WNBA game, Nike was advertising their new Sparq line, which featured a pretty nifty soundtrack, as is typical of Nike. The soundtrack was so nifty, in fact, that I decided to download the whole album from its artist, Saul Williams. It should be finished by the time I complete this post.

Sunday meant more TV (movies, mostly), preceded by a 90-minute long run out on deserted FM roads -- that's the really good part about house-sitting in the middle of nowhere. Two sour notes on my run: 1) Got severely dehydrated and had to walk the last half mile back in; 2) My Shuffle died on me. Bummer of the deal is that Apple is closed today for the holiday, so I'll have to wait until tomorrow to find out what to do about this. Geez, can you imagine?

More warm fuzzies from the weekend to outweigh the bad: Chatted with D--- on the tele and by text, too. He & K--- are doing well; N--- & I hope to meet up with them for dinner or breakfast on our way to Lubbock at the end of June. N--- & I also started making tentative wedding plans, but much depends on the dates for UTSA's commencement ceremonies, as well as those for the LV marathon. I'll not say any more until m'lady & I have had a chance to chat and scheme some more.

For the final bit of quality time, I need to leave my computer. I've a kitty curled up in my lap who apparently missed me this past weekend. We're going to go do some serious cuddling in preparation for my penultimate week of school while listening to the new Saul Williams CD. I'll give the cat a scratch under the chin for you, if you like. Regardless, thanks for reading.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Whoah, That Rocked

This has been a busy week. Time gives the impression of creeping by, but the last few weeks of school are typically that way. All the same, my platter is full with cramming in the last bit of the scope & sequence to my courses and readying the kiddos for finals. Add to that tri training and there's not time for much else. Makes one wonder how I found time to get engaged.

You read that right: I am engaged.

On a sunset walk along a "beach" (quote marks used as it was along an inlet of Corpus Christi Bay, so not a beach, in the traditional sense), and on bended knee, I asked N--- to marry me, and she said yes. The wedding will not take place for some time, as common thought is for her to finish grad school. For the most part, don't hold your breath for an invite; we're hoping for a ridiculously small ceremony: Family and a few close friends, only. Keep your eyes peeled for a picture, though.

Elsewhere, I'm getting my position on the Felt tweaked. New aerobar position called for it, in a worse way than I possibly imagined. After installing the new saddle I scored for a song at Bike Heaven the other night, M--- did some adjusting to the saddle height and forwardness of it, raising me a little over 2cm and slamming me forward. He's even talking about a tad more height and maybe even a shorter stem by a centimeter or two. Those first few adjustments, though, made a world of difference: A little over half-a-mile per hour faster over last night's outing -- and with no pain in my IT band. I hope I can keep training going strong until the end of June, for I cannot wait for retribution at BSLT.

In addition to needing a shower, the cat is screaming for me, so I suppose I'll button this up. Thanks for reading.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Gear Up

For nearly $400, one would expect a bicycle computer to do its <expletive> job, right? Right. Such is not the case when it comes to Polar's S725X.

I bought this little gem over Spring Break month before last, as I tend to train much better with an HRM, plus I was hoping to clean up the looks of things on my rides. The S725X certainly did the cleaning up part, and also did well with HR data, BUT, when it comes to cycling feedback, there is a bit to be desired.

In a nut shell, either the speed sensors were not transmitting data 100% of the time or the S725X was not receiving data 100% of the time. Regardless, I'm not happy, and I lack the inclination to figure out what's wrong with it. A pair of Specialized Speedzone wireless computers should hit my doorstep tomorrow, so, after a quick spin tomorrow evening, I'll have a better idea of what my electronics setup will look like for the remainder of the season. Of course, should I opt for the non-Polarized route, I'll have to go back to manually entering data to track my workouts. Bleck.

There. I just had to whine some about how complicated I make my life, especially when it comes to relative non-essentials. The next post will be better, I promise, as I am just really, really tired right now. So, it's off to bed with me. Thanks for reading.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Weekend Update

Quick post to check in on my rabid fans to let them all know that I am alive and well and doing fine.

We're counting down to three weeks of school until the summer training season begins, although I have been in "race mode" for the past few weeks, already; watching my fuel intake more closely, sticking to a regular workout routine, and tweaking my gear. Thus far, I've swapped out my training shoes (Mizunos just aren't cutting it -- and haven't been the past, several months) and have begun questioning my purchase of a Polar S725X back in mid-March. The latter, essentially, was an impulse purchase, and, while I do enjoy the HR data and easy uploads of workouts, it's not exactly living up to my expectations. The reason I ditched the S625X (same thing, different face, included foot pod, as opposed to the bike mount [better deal IMO, but, again, it was an impulse item]) was to simplify my workouts, which, again, have grown more complex, as I now wind up resembling Locutus of Borg on my workouts. On top of that, my bike mileages don't add up to what they once did and average speed is much lower than what it once was; the thing's turning out to be a piece. Hello, eBay!? :-D

Sorry, this post wasn't intended to become a rant against Polar. In all, I am in a wonderful mood, given the weekend. N--- & I traveled to Corpus for the 33rd Beach to Bay Relay Marathon. This year, we were on the same team, which made the handing off of the baton that much easier, as N--- was much easier to spot than was M---. True, I had to run the beach leg (ugg, did that suck), which yielded me a 7:33/mi average (providing distances & such of this one dude's ForeRunner 305 were accurate) , but, I'm not in near the shape i was last year, either. Notes to self: 1) No more slacking on training, ever; 2) Stay out of the library, except for grabbing books and other media. More on B2B and other training shenanigans to come!

Wow, almost six. Time to ready myself for SNL and the week ahead. Minor laundry to be done, plus ironing of the shirts. Oh, the exciting life I lead. Still, thanks for reading.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

The Past Month

Hola, amigos.

Yeah, it's been a whole month since I've rapped at ya, and what a month has it been. Here are the highlights:
  • Training is trucking right along, thanks, in small part, to the Polar s725x, even if the wristband on it sucks.
  • Picked up sponsorship from Nuun in the form of a 40% discount on the tabs. Seeing how I go through a boat-load of these in a month, the savings will be worth it.
  • Been to SeaWorld; still no hammerheads.
  • Scored a sweet summer job: 3-week contractor, serving as an assessor for a national educator certification company.
  • Received my PDAS and am (again) a "proficient" educator
  • Logged 39 miles in just under 12 hours at Relay for Life this past weekend.
  • Signed up for Buffalo Springs at the end of June.
Things weren't so bad during the actual running of RfL, but I'm still having pain in my right leg. It could be that whole knot thing L--- mentioned during spring break, but, after working a tennis ball on my foot last night, I'm beginning to wonder if it could be a problem with my foot...my shoes, in particular. I've been training on Mizuno Wave Riders for the past four years without incident (holy crap, has it really been four years?!), recent events aside. So, I'm wondering if I do need something with higher arch support, ala Nike or Brooks -- both brands from which I have shied, given their higher arches. Heck, I dunno. Maybe I'll head up to Academy to check out their wares. Gets me closer to Chipotle, and they're having free burrito day for teachers. :D

Wow, I didn't realize just how late it's getting. I've still some papers to grade and want to do that before bedtime. Despite my previous comment, summer is fast-approaching, so I should be able to be a tad more diligent about posting (yeah, how many times have you read that sort of comment, here?). I'll certainly try to post some more about RfL, as that was, indeed, an awesome event. Until then, thanks for reading.