Subscribe to It Has Nothing to Do with Age by Email Follow Tusk95664 on Twitter It Has Nothing to Do with Age: April 2011
It Has Nothing To Do With Age provides self-help principles. The inspirational stories give concrete illustrations of overcoming many of life's challenges. Difficulties pertaining to depression, grief, divorce, and death are presented and worked through by the participants. Physical impairments, injuries, overcoming issues with weight, alcohol, and nicotine are also dealt with and resolved by the athletes.

This book provides a model on how to overcome some of the difficulties that confront all of us . Further, this read sheds a beacon of light on preventive measures for good physical and mental health. Research demonstrates that exercise is an important component in treating such ailments and debilitating illness such as depression, stroke, heart disease, brain or cognitive malfunction,and Alzheimer's disease.

I suggest that proper exercise can be used as a preventive measure for psychological, cognitive, and physical health as well. Follow my prescription and lead a better, more fulfilling, and healthier life.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Endurance Riding,Western States100,Cognitive RX., Sai Baba

I found out that Satya Sai Baba, the Indian guru, age 84, just died May 9, 2011 issue of Time. His teachings are summarized: “love all, serve all; help ever, hurt never”. I would add “be true to yourself, find your passion, stay mentally and physically fit”. Sai Baba’s teachings provide a terrific framework of how to treat others. My focus is  how the individual might treat himself.
Today, I ran about 8 miles on the trail and noticed the orange ribbon markings for the American River 50 endurance ride. I have done that ride many times and have good memories. One time Jonathan and I rode together and recall that he wasn’t thrilled about the narrow rutted trail, steep drop-offs with river below. Some of that trail is downright scary. Another memory is when my Arabian mare Gypsy and I came in third or fourth and she won best condition and received High Point for the vet evaluations that day. Her scores that day were awesome. That was a very good day.
While running with my white-haired terrier Digger, I had the opportunity to think about some of the psychologists that influenced me and are pertinent to the topic of motivation. Yesterday, I wrote about cognitive therapy. Albert Ellis is my first introduction into how our thoughts influence behavior in either a positive or negative way. Ellis, his book “A Guide to Rational Living” wrote about 10 irrational ideas and how to eradicate them therapeutically. In my interviews, I asked the athletes about their thinking during training or competition to gain insight into their motivation. I wanted to know how they thought. Jack Scholl, age 85, a rower for over 60 years gave examples of how he uses his psyche to assist him when the rowing is tough, and exhausting. His responses are interesting as he uses both positive and negative thinking to influence his behavior and keep going. Russ Kiernan age 72, Mr.Dipsea also gave illustrations of his thinking during his trail run competitions. For me, one mantra that I used over and over again during the Western states run is “I can”. It is important to employ thinking to our advantage. Each of us has our own way of thinking when the going is tough. Don’t let negative thoughts get in the way or sabotage what you want to accomplish in life. For those of you that want to share your inner thoughts, or mantras during competitions, please don’t hesitate to post them.
Another concept that I use in my research is called” expectancy” which is related to goal setting and the evaluation process related to that accomplishment or goal completion. Psychologists such as Kurt Lewin, Julian Rotter, and Edward Tolman to name a few researched and wrote about this concept. Expectancy is a powerful motivational tool. The individual sets a goal and hopefully his level of aspiration is realistic and in line with his expectation. If one doesn’t expect to do well then often we don’t, but on the contrary if we expect to do well then more likely we do well. With Lance Armstrong in his prime, what do you think his expectancy is regarding Tour de France competitions? When Kobe Bryant is playing an important game in the fourth quarter and he takes a shot, what you think his expectancy is in making the shot? With Barry Bonds in his prime in the bottom of the ninth with the score tied and at bat, what do you think his expectancy is in getting a hit or home run? This means that when the rest of us set realistic goals and have positive expectations or expectancies our chances of success are strong. Pay attention to your goal setting and your expectations. Make sure they’re aligned properly.
The weather is changing for the better in most parts United States and the world so now is a good time to think about oneself. Some questions to be asked include: What can I do to feel better? What can I do to improve memory and concentration? What can I do to lower my blood pressure or hypertension? What can I do to get stronger and fit? What can I do to improve my performance in my sport? What can I do to make my community a better place? In other words, this is a good time for self reflection, goal setting, developing expectancies, and employing thinking that leads to positive behavior.

Friday, April 29, 2011

You Can Rest When You Die

Yesterday Frank and I did our first run since doing the run at Malibu last weekend. It was a short run and we both felt good. We have another race on May 8 – a 20K in Oakland. I decided I needed more miles today so I ran a trail that I have not run in years that we call the Coffer Dam road. I started from my house that is on the Olmstead Loop trail. I started out feeling pretty good and took a trail that we call Secret trail. It was very pretty out today with lots of wildflowers. I found the trail heading down to the river. It was about two miles of rocky trail down to the American River. I was not sure the trail would be passable since the last time I ran it about 12 years ago it was washed out and impassable. Lucky for me I was able to make it to the bottom -- now for the fun part of running up the Coffer Dam road. It was still as steep as ever but I was able to make it to the top without stopping. The rest of the way back home is where last weekend caught up to me -- it was windy and cold and just plain hard the last few miles. My run today was 10.70 miles, but as they say You Can Rest When You Die !!

Adventure Racing,Cognitive Therapy,& Cross Training

Are you too old or out of shape to start exercising and making changes in your life? On the contrary, another question to be asked is “can you afford to wait any longer”? It seems that our thinking often gets in the way of making significant changes in our life. The Greek philosopher Epictetus apparently said something like “live in accordance with nature, to unlearn the habit of judging everything that happens as good or bad, and to learn to distinguish what is within your power to change and what is not”. In other words, the thing that upsets people is not what happens but what they think it means or simply put “nothing is good or bad but thinking makes it so”. Don’t let your thinking get in the way of making those necessary changes. Learn to challenge self-defeating ideas per psychologist Albert Ellis. Cognitive (how we think) therapy deals with just that.
Prior to writing my book, I generated a number of hypotheses about the psychological makeup of the athletes. To illustrate: 1. Supportive environments; 2. Physicality,  a main criteria in behavior; 3. Positive mindsets incorporating  affirmations and mantras; 4. Creative problem-solving; 5. Retirement is not an endpoint; and 6. Desire for mastery. So, I designed a questionnaire that addressed these notions during the interview process. I wanted to get a clear understanding of why athletes 65 years of age and older put themselves into activities that pushed physical and mental barriers. Their stories and behavior is more than just exercise. In each of their extreme sports, the individual has to overcome and push through pain, discomfort, injury, exhaustion, and hardship. It is clear, that one has to be tough psychologically to deal with the many issues that come up during an event. The why question is extremely important and the conclusions found insightful.
I remember telling, Bill, one of my pacers during a running event (it might have been the AR 50 )“I’m tired”. His direct response to me “you’re supposed to be tired”. He didn’t give me sympathy; he stated the obvious and that made perfect sense at the time. Oh yeah, I’m supposed to be tired. So now, I can focus on my event. Another insight that I learned during a long ultra event is that things psychologically and physically change. For example, if I’m feeling great I know that won’t last and by the same token if I’m feeling crappy that’ll likely change to. In other words, one constant is that things change and nothing stays the same. Notice, employing positive and realistic thinking is important for success
Geno Ortez, the owner of a massage therapy school on the big island of Hawaii told me recently that he believes cross training reduces overuse injury. His example is people who compete in triathlons. They experience less injury than ultra runners according to him. His experience ranges from being involved in two Olympics to working with professional athletes such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Ride and tie is a good sport for cross training since it involves using different muscles for riding and running.  Using different muscles is the key along with the amount of training time. I don’t particularly like biking and I have difficulty with swimming so triathlons are out for me. Currently, I’m experimenting with kayaking for cross training. This leads to Tony’s new purchase of a 2011 advanced frame convertible inflatable kayak made by Advanced Elements.  The kayak length is 15 feet and he believes that his kayak is faster than mine.  Once he gets it, we’ll see.
Another cross training support to consider is Adventure Racing. This activity often combines disciplines such as trail running, mountain biking and some type of paddling either with canoe or kayak. In this team sport the “team” stays together for the entire race which can last anywhere from hours to days. As a GPS device isn’t allowed, competitors navigate a course using maps and compass. Find a friend with similar interests and check it out. If only I didn’t have to bike.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Ride&Tie,Boston Marathon ,Kentucky Derby &Outward Bound

 How many of you have ever heard of ride and tie? For those of you that haven’t, a good article is written and published in the April, 2004 edition of Running Times Magazine titled “The Thinking Athletes Sport”. In Rachel Toor’s article she gives history about the sport and about the event in one World Championship held in the Lake Tahoe area near Truckee, California. Incidentally, Rachel is also a competitor. Rachel describes ride and tie as follows: think of it as a two-person relay with a horse as the baton. Think of it as what would happen if you married the Boston Marathon to the Kentucky Derby and brought them to Outward Bound for the honeymoon. Think of it as the most energetically efficient way to cover 30 to 40 miles of rough terrain. If you think about it long enough, one of two things will happen. Either you’ll decide is absolute lunacy, or ask where you can sign up. Thank you Rachel for clever description.
For me, ride and tie played a significant part in my life that I detail in my book. I learned about the sport in the 80s or the 90s. At the time I heard about the sport, I was trail riding and had done a few NATRC rides. NATRC is an equestrian trail riding event. The rider is judged on his ability to navigate his steed between point a and point b on the trail according to certain rules and regulations. My impression of ride & tie at that time is that only ultra-athletes competed. My impression is partly right as there are a number of world-class athletes participating.
I met people like Jim Howard a winner of the San Francisco Marathon, the Western states 100 mile run, and the world championship Levi’s ride and tie in the same year. His friend and teammate Dennis Rinde finished seventh at the Boston Marathon clocking in at 2:13. Dennis has run two 2: 12’s, four 2: 13’s, and two 2: 14’s. I also met Tom Johnson a three-time winner of the Western states 100 mile run, Mark Rickman a third-place finisher in the Western states 100 mile run, and many other outstanding runners and equestrians. This sport opened up a totally new world to me.
In 2009, I started thinking about writing a book that demonstrated my transformation. In fact two of the individuals in Rachel’s article are featured in my book. I used age 65 as the cutoff  or starting point in order to research the motivation of the unique aged athlete. Both Lew Hollander and Jim Steere met the criteria and are included. Their stories are both remarkable and interesting.
Some of the hypotheses that I began thinking about in order to assess athletic motivation are as follows: 1. competitiveness started at an early age; 2. high pain threshold; 3. biology is not destiny as physical and emotional deficits can be overcome; 4. a positive mindset that includes mantras and affirmations; 5. thinking of themselves as young; 6. passion in their sport; and 7. positive social connections. These are just a few of the hypotheses that I employed in developing a detailed questionnaire that I used in interviewing seven most remarkable athletes and individuals who participate in a variety of different and unique sports.
Hypothesis number seven: positive social connections is based on a secondary need called “affiliation” or” belonging” in psychological terms. This concept has been studied by many psychologists including Tolman, Schachter, Maslow, and McClelland to name a few. The model I relied on is Albert Maslow’s hierarchy of needs that resulted in self-actualization. He used the word "belongingness" in talking about need structures. I am calling need for affiliation or belongingness simply “social connections”.
So in my book, you’ll read about eight individual athletes and hear their illuminating stories and gain insight into their drives and motivations. I will continue to add more information in the blog in order for you the reader to get a greater understanding of why people do what they do.
Today is a good day as it included a 5mile trail run. Upon completion, Tony, Debbie, Linda, and I proceeded to kayak on Rec Lake in Cool. I worked on my stroke while Tony is figuring out the kayak to buy that is faster than mine.  He ordered one. If his is faster than mine ,then I will have to upgrade and find  a faster kayak than his. Connections and competition is great.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Let's Go,Obesity,Kirstie Alley,and Cross training

“Let’s Go” is a community-based program in Maine. I had not heard of this program until I read about it in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal,  dated April 26. According to the article, CDC-Center for Disease Control awarded 39 US communities 257 million to make environmental and policy changes regarding childhood obesity. In the United States, the childhood obesity rate appears to have leveled off after tripling since the 1980s. Currently, about a third of children and teens are overweight and 12.5 million children and teens or 16.9% of that age group remains obese. Here is an example of the federal  and local government , and local communities working together to confront and change this major problem. It seems that people left to their own devices do not always carry the ball without fumbling. One might think that parents want to do right with their children or maybe they are unable to do so for multiple reasons. It is important for parents to look at their behavior as it affects their children. The statistics don’t lie as overweight children are a major problem and this has negative implications for all of us.

So Maine, spent 3.7 million in the schools and other sites to combat this problem. Simply put, the families adopted a program referred to as 5-2-1-0. Translated, this meant at least five servings of fruits and vegetables, two hours or less of screen time, one hour of exercise, and zero sugary drinks. How well did this program work? One independent telephone survey in the Portland area familiar with the program reported 28% of the children had adopted the 5-2-1-0 program in 2009 compared with 22% in 2007. In Maine, this Let’s Go program expanded to 345 schools, childcare centers, and after school programs. Maine Health, a nonprofit hospital group, invested $ 500,000 and committed another $ 500,000 over the next five years.

Let’s Go is one way to begin dealing with this major health problem. I am pleased to read about this program and hope that a program like this is not cut out of the budget. Employing psychological learning theory is a concept called modeling. In other words, one way of learning is to imitate what we see from our parents. It is not necessarily what they say that is important but their behavior and what they do. It is important for parents to eat healthy or at least five servings of fruit and vegetables daily. It is important for parents to limit TV, computer, and other screen time to less than two hours a day. It is important for parents to exercise at least one hour per day and to reduce or eliminate sugar drinks. If you can’t do it on your own, then find someone to help you. Maybe a personal trainer might help to change behavior?

This is where my book comes into play. I provide examples of sport activities and the benefits related. Although, my stories are about extreme sports, non-of us started out this way. We all began as kids through play. It is true that none of us had the benefit or detriment of the onslaught of video games, computer, TV programs, fast food restaurants, giant meal portions, and the elimination or reduction of PE in schools. I also read in the same paper about the Tea Party in Pennsylvania that wants to curtail property taxes so that the schools can reduce their budgets. I am not sure if that is the best policy.

It is clear, people in this country need to change behavior and become healthier and for the youth to follow. Do your part and change those behaviors that can benefit us all. There many ways to do that. Join the fun and get out doors or go to the gym to improve. Keep on doing it and think about eating better. I hope that Kirstie Alley continues her success on Dancing with the Stars. If you read her web page you know that she’s concerned about weight gain. Kirstie, keep on dancing as it’s a great aerobic activity. Dancing is fun and I should do more of it. I call dancing cross training.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Ultra Running,Obesity,Alzheimers, and Aging

Today is a good day. I am feeling recovered from Saturday’s difficult 50 K.  Run in Malibu. In yesterday’s blog, I commented on the lactic acid buildup in my legs. I received an e-mail from Janet from Australian Connection (aussiconn @yahoo.com). Get her equestrian and running catalog. She told me about the product Sports legs for lactic acid. She claims that since using that product the lactic acid build up in her legs lessened. This product can be purchased at the Auburn Running Store. Thank you, Janet for that information.
My recovery after a running event routine is as follows: keep moving and utilize walking, massage the quads, drink lots of water, and use the 4 foot cylinder for quads, hamstrings, calves, and the outer side of quads. I also have gone to the Monster of Massage in Newcastle for relief. I don’t remember if recovery time is slower today than 14 years ago. My guess is that it is. I know that I started running the first Tuesday after Way Too Cool and then left for Mexico on Thursday and ran every day there. When I returned home, I felt tired. Taking a few days off from running is probably the right thing to do. I just have to remember that. One’s thinking can interfere with reality. I have to keep on remembering to listen to my body and if I’m tired to back off. Easier said but it’s the right thing to do. Recovery time is very important. I plan to do more walking and call that recovery time. Another idea is to perform cross training during this time. Now that I have a kayak I can do that and work on my upper body while resting my legs.
The April 25, 2011 issue of Sports Illustrated under the Go Figure section told about Charles Chulada a 59-year-old Florida brick mason. This man played guard at the University of Syracuse from 1969-1973. Last week, he tried out for the CFL’s Saskatchewan Rough riders. Linda’s son Buck who is approaching 50 played linebacker for a few years at San Diego State until his knee injury. Buck eats healthy, works out, and spars with younger fighters. He keeps his body percentage of fat to a minimum. Keep it up Buck.
I mention these individuals as examples of those of us that employ “denial of aging.” We do not want to age and be like our fathers and other unhealthy elders. I’m referring to myself and to Buck. I do not know Charles’ story.  I would hypothesize that he might have a similar story and also   misses important elements from his younger years. He is likely to be in good physical condition and being a brick mason contributes to that. For me, age is a number and is a factor that affects who I am today. I want to continue doing what I’m doing today and do not want that to stop especially for reasons like health and illness. I like being around people with similar mindsets. The athletes that I interviewed in my book fit that same pattern. They don’t want to stop either. Being with Tony, Jonathan, and Penny is very comfortable. Eating healthy, incorporating exercise and finding passion are important variables to success. None of us are overweight. We all are competitive and enjoy what we do. I know they don’t want to stop either.
My mother lived to age 93 and said in her later years “I like to be around younger people”. I think that she was onto something very special. Thank you, Mom for your insight and your gift. Do I appreciate that now?  Developmentally, there are eight psychological stages per Erik Erikson. As a result, people have different psychological issues that result in thinking and action per their particular stage of development. For me, generativity, being healthy, being physical, being competitive, and having passion are important.
 The May 2, 2011 issue of Time under Health and Science said that one key to improve memory and concentration is to lose a few pounds. They quoted a study involving hundred and 50 overweight individuals. In this small population some lost weight as a result of bariatric surgery. This group improved their test scores on recall and attention when tested 12 weeks later. This research add this more evidence to the belief that obesity affects cognitive deficits, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and stroke negatively. These scientists are interested in seeing if cognitive benefits occur in people who shed weight through diet and exercise. I would predict they would. The problem of course is getting obese people to begin diet and exercise.  In other words change one’s lifestyle. Watch my blog and I will write about getting started.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Beautiful Malibu, A Personal Trainer, and a 50 K Ultra

Well I am glad that the Malibu 50 K. is over. The race began at the Sycamore Canyon staging area 8:30 A.M. last Saturday. There is an 8K. 20 K., 30 K., and 50 K. event. To prepare for the run, I drove to Pacific Palisades on Thursday to meet Tony and Debbie at Tony’s sisters. Penny is our host for the weekend. The plan is for Jonathan and his 11-year-old son Atticus to join us Friday. The accommodation is terrific as Penny is a very good host.
Penny is 61 years of age, a personal trainer, and Tony’s older sister. She is an equestrian and specializes in fitness for equestrians and other amateur athletes. Her education includes Advanced Personal Training and Nutrition. She is a certified Star 11 Spinning Instructor. If you want to get stronger, increase energy, reduce the risk of disease, improve self-confidence and enjoy improved health and fitness contact her at:mailto:penny.fink@yahoo.com. She will design an individual program to assist you in meeting and achieving your life goals. She offers private and small group personal training. A rate sheet and references are available upon request. Contact her today, don’t wait, and get in the best physical fitness of your life.
Saturday morning we all got up early and proceeded to the race site. As it turned out, Atticus, Debbie, and Penny entered the 8K and all of them placed in their age groups. Is that an impressive group or not? Tony entered the 20 K., came in second in his age group, and is pleased. Jonathan entered the 50 K. The 50 K. is comprised of a 30 K. loop and a 20 K. loop. After he completed his first loop, he stopped. Thus, he ran 30 K. for his work. When I arrived after my first 30 K loop, the cast of characters is there waiting. Everyone thought that the cut off for the 50 K. is 1:15 PM. I am at the aid station at that time and asked about the cut off time. I’m told that 2:00 PM is a cut off for the 50 K. I have no reason to stop. Being tired is par and understandable and is part of the experience. The reason for the 2:00 PM cut off time and the nine-hour finishing time cut off time is because of the difficulty of this particular run. Generally, a 50 K. has an 8 ½ hour cut off time.
If I was either a goat or a big horn sheep, I would have been happy. I can’t recall experiencing a tougher 50 K. than this one. Each loop is primarily going up the mountain and then down the mountain. I must admit there is some flat on the first loop and very little on the second. There are plenty of switchbacks on this roughly 6,000 feet of climb. The trail is steep, rocky, and rutted in spots. I got plenty tired. My overall time is not spectacular but I finished. Being the only one in my age group, I came in first and last. I am pleased that I finished and didn’t hurt myself in the process. The only discomfort is the lactic acid build up that is par for any run of this distance. This means plenty of walking and/or massage to reduce the lactic acid buildup.
The next run is on the 8th of May and is in the Oakland hills. Tony and I are going to run the 20 K.  So for the next two weeks, I’m going to recover and not run especially hard on training runs

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

What does Kobe have to do with Alzheimer's?

I can’t wait to talk to my buddy and ride and tie partner Jonathan Jordan after tonight’s LA Lakers basketball game. Jonathan can’t stand Kobe and the Lakers. For me it’s a different story. I became a Lakers fan when Magic Johnson was drafted by the Lakers. Being from Detroit, I remember Magic and all his” magic “when he played for Michigan State. I especially rooted for him when MSU played Indiana State and Larry Bird for the NCAA championship. I especially rooted for the Lakers when those two battled year after year for the NBA championship. What does this have to do with my blog?
In my book,” It Has Nothing to do with Age”, I provide seven prescriptions for implementing a better lifestyle in both attitude and behavior. Prescription number three: “enrich your life by making friends, sharing interests, learning about others by becoming part of the new group”. For me, that’s exactly what I did in 1997 by participating in my first ride and tie. I met many equestrians, runners, and competitive athletes as a result. For one, I met my current running and blog partner Tony in 1997 at Mount Hamilton during both an endurance ride and a ride and tie event.
From ride and tie to endurance riding to ultra running, I met many individuals and became part of each of these groups as the result of the commonality, interests, and goals of each of us. My circle of friends blossomed and I became part of the sub- culture of each. Read my book and you will learn about the athletes’ history from birth to present as it will enrich your life as well.
From the Harvard Medical School the following is from their issue # two titled “Focus on Healthy Living”. One 2008  study from the Health and Retirement funded by The National Institute on Aging  and The Harvard School of Public Health in a  longitudinal  study from the years 1998 and 2004 raised the question “does socializing with friends and family protect your brain and memory during aging”?  The researchers were looking for causality. Does being socially active protect against memory loss or do people who suffer cognitive decline tend to socialize less than average?
The results suggest that individuals who had higher levels of interaction with family friends and other people are more likely to retain cognitive functioning. They found that the people most at risk for dementia had fewer than 12 years of education, had high blood pressure, diabetes, or stroke. Another study at Kaiser Permanente in Southern California looked at subjects 78 years old who did not show any symptoms of dementia. These individuals were followed over the next four years and the researchers found that women with large social networks were less likely to develop dementia than were more isolated women controlling for age, education, depression, and other health conditions. Unfortunately the studies in question did not tell us how social interaction protects against cognitive decline. What is clear in my in -depth study of senior athletes ages 65 to 85 is that none of the seven or eight (including me), suffers from cognitive decline. Jack Scholl age 85 continues to give presentations to many groups about the American Revolution, and  gives Liberty Bell tours at America’s birthplace;  Physicist Lew Hollander age 80  gives scientific presentations and develops patents; Jim Steere, DVM  still  vetted into his mid-80s; and Doc Shay in her mid-70s  is an emergency room physician.
Read my book, follow my prescriptions and you can accomplish the unthinkable and become productive throughout your lifetime. Age is just a number for many of us and not a barrier. Incidentally, Tony, Jonathan, and I are meeting in Malibu this weekend for a trail run. Young Jonathan and I are running a 50 K. while Tony creeping on 60 is running the 20 K.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Grete Weitz,Geoffrey Mutai & Adventure Sports

Just yesterday, runners young and old near and far are celebrating young Geoffrey Mutai’s performance at the Boston Marathon. Remember, his record time is 2:03:02 which is about a 13 mile-per-hour pace. I continue to be impressed. I don’t know what it is like to be able to run 13 mph but I do know what it is like to run 26.1 miles. Wow!
And today, I learned that Grete Weitz the Norwegian born world record holder at 3000 m died at age 57. You might remember that her first marathon was in New York City. She was supposed to be the rabbit or pacer. However, as it turned out she was not only the rabbit, she won the event and set a women’s world record for the marathon. Grete won the women’s marathon in New York City eight times. Wow! Cancer ,unfortunately won her final event. She is gone but her name and records remain. One moral of the story is to do it and not to wait for tomorrow.
Tony and I did our last tapering run before leaving for Malibu for my 50 K. and his 20 K. During our run today we talked about Mutai’s and his ability. We decided that even if we go to Kenya to train, we are unlikely to set the record for 26 plus miles. Oh well, just have to be satisfied with who I am and what I’m able to do at this point in my life. This does not mean that I don’t have to eat better and train more efficiently. I would like to continue to improve what I do. This means more hard work ahead. There are no shortcuts or magic substances. More about that subject –hormones and steroid treatment tomorrow.
I’m thinking that cross training might be a variable to consider. This is where being a kayaker comes in to play. This sport might provide another way to work on upper body and cardio along with a new sporting activity. Maybe, kayak racing is a direction to follow? Or, how about creating a biathlon that includes running and kayaking?  The event could it be advertised in California’s Adventure Sports Journal. As Tony is leaving, he mentions putting on events at Folsom Lake. The location is great because alongside are running trails.  I do not want to make a prediction at this point. Just want to tell you what’s on my mind

Monday, April 18, 2011

Geoffrey Mutai, Boston Marathon, and Cool Ride & Tie

Geoffrey Mutai shattered the world record at the Boston Marathon today. His time is :2:03:02 for the 26.2 mile event. The temperature is cool and he is  aided by wind on the downhill. Unfortunately, the wind factor eliminates him from setting the world record at that distance . Wind or no wind that time is blistering. Can you imagine running 13 mph for 26 miles? That Kenyan is plenty fast. Hats off to him. There is a crossover between this event and the Cool Ride and Tie.

David, my partner at the Quicksilver and the Cool Ride and Tie ran a couple of Marathons. His marathon time at Boston is around three hours and that is fast as this is a new event distance for him . David's specialty is the half marathon. Needless to say,David and I do quite well as partners in the ride and tie. Through ride and tie, I met a number of world-class athletes that includes : Tom Johnson, Jim Howard, and Brian Purcell. These runners came in first in the Western States 100 . Mark Rickman came in third and is a winner in his age division the same year that I was in 2002. Dennis Rinde came in seventh twice at the Boston marathon a number of years ago. Tom Johnson, Mark  Rickman, and I are previous winners at the Cool Ride and Tie in the long course .Tom andMark have won the five-year event twice.

There is quite a difference between a road race and a trail run. For those of you unfamiliar with the trail, some of the obstacles include the following: deep ruts, sharp turns , uneven trail, rocks and roots to trip on, mud , deep streams with slippery rocks, severe elevation change, fallen trees and brush, stinging bees, poisonous snakes, and mountain lions and I have encountered all of the above. And of course, the trail runs are without mobs of spectators and large cash awards.One might ask "why do a trail"? One thing comes to mind is that the trail is gentler on your body and nature is wonderful. Not everyone is a professional runner and hoping to make their countries Olympic team .  Many of us  are amateurs, like the camaraderie, concerned about health and fitness, and found a passion.

On October 1, 2011 the Sixth Annual Cool Ride and Tie is going to be held in Cool . For more information, consult: Ride& Tie.org or post a note on the blog and I will contact you as Linda and I are race directors for the event.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Rei,Johnny Cash,and Water Sports

Today is different in many ways. Tony, Debbie, Linda and I signed up for a class to try out kayaks on Lake Natoma. This area is close to Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison. The morning temperature is in the 60s with a shining sun. The lake is calm with few ripples. One couldn’t have asked for a better picturesque setting on this glorious Saturday. Our kayak class is sponsored by REI and designed to give an introduction to one and two person kayaks. We kibitzed and laughed about Jaws being in the water with us. Time on the water is great. While being on the water, Tony came next to me in his kayak and said "I’ll race you". Okay, that’s all it took to get my competitive juices flowing. From then on, I brought up the idea of getting kayaks to race him. We found out, that length is an important variable when it comes to speed. So we have to get similar kayaks in order to have a fair race.
Being on the water and being comfortable in the water is a great experience. I remember taking a rowing class and the difficulty in keeping the shell up right and the technicality of rowing. Being in a one-man shell is very difficult, very technical, and requires much practice. The kayak is more stable and the stroke easier to learn. That’s not to say that one doesn’t have to practice in order to get good and especially to race.

Talking about kayaking, being on the water brought back memories of the movie Captains Courageous that I remember seeing when I was young. Other memories such as Herman Melville’s Capt. Ahab in Moby Dick and Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea come to mind as well.
On the way home, we stopped first at REI and looked at an inflatable kayak and was not impressed. The two employees inflated the kayak for us and told us that was their first time. Eventually, the kayak was inflated but in a cumbersome way. At that point it seemed like the inflatable kayak is a real hassle.
Our last stop is at the local kayak shop at the top of the canyon. The owner a man named Guy is there and gave us much information about the kayaks that he had both new and used. We talked to him about the hassle at REI and he proceeded to demonstrate the ease in the assembly of the inflatable kayak. He is fast and efficient. It’s clear he knows what he is doing. In fact he said" take it out and return it tomorrow". So I’m thinking this might be a great way to cross train and a new sport to conquer. So, why not take it home and try it out at Rec Lake. That’s exactly what we did for the next few hours. This is fun. At the lake, I told Linda" let’s buy it" .This could be the beginning of a new chapter. By the way, I didn’t miss not running today.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Charlie Sheen,Dick Hoyt,Addiction, and Me

In the true sense of the word “addiction” refers to a dependence on a chemical substance to the extent that physiologic dependence is established. This can manifest itself as “withdrawal symptoms”. With Charlie Sheen, it seems clear that he has an issue with addiction. The only thing that is unclear to me is the particular substance or substances that he’s using. A question to consider is his addiction good or bad for him? If you asked him the question, he might reply that his addiction has been an asset to his acting career and his star status. He might add that his personality has been influenced by his lifestyle and this allows him to portray his on-screen characters more realistically. I’m sure there are many others that have a different opinion and would suggest that he need help in overcoming his addiction and dependence. One thing is certain - he still has star status at least in the present. What will Charlie be like in 20 years? Will he still be a star? Will he be a productive member of society? Let’s see what Charlie does with his life from now on and evaluate the outcome.

You might wonder who is Dick Hoyt? The April 18, 2011 issue of Sports Illustrated written by Gary Smith featured an article titled “The Wheels of Life”. Dick, age 70 has a cerebral palsy son approaching 50 years of age. Okay, why is he in Sports Illustrated?  In 1977, Dick 37 and his son Rick, 15 at the time, entered a 5 mile road race. Rick was placed in a three wheel trike like” machine” .Dick pushed while Rick rode as a passenger. Up to this point, Dick was a 37-year-old captain in the air National Guard. He had never run more than a mile outside of boot camp 18 years earlier and now he was pushing his son in wheelchair for 5 miles in a road running race. They finished that race and that started a different lifestyle for Dick and Rick promoting the disabled very differently.

Since that first race 33 years ago, the Hoyt's have entered more than 1,000 road races and triathlons. For the swimming part, Dick pulls Rick through the water atop a raft; for the biking part, Rick rides in front in a special chair. For the first Boston Marathon, Dick had to be considered “outlaw” since he wasn’t officially allowed to enter. But they did finish, and have completed 28 Boston Marathon’s. They also completed the Hawaiian Iron man. Dick continues to participate in these events even though he has some health issues and went through a divorce  in the process. Might you wonder why he continues to do this? It seems clear to me that he has a non-chemical addiction-dependence. For a more thorough description of all that he has gone through read the Sports Illustrated article. You might raise the question does he have a positive addiction-dependence or a negative addiction-dependence? I’m pretty sure that Dick is proud of his involvement with his son and likely would do it again if given the opportunity. This is who Dick is -this is his creative self - this is his identity, this gives him meaning. It is clear that Dick is a special and determined athlete and has a passionate cause that keeps him motivated .

What about me? In 2002, I ran the Western States 100 and was interviewed in the documentary film “Running Madness” of that event. During one of the interviews, I referred to my running as an addiction. There was no chemical substance involved and my running did not interfere with work or relationships. I called my running at the time a positive addiction. For the past 10 years or so I run 5 to 7 days a week and total about 50 to 65 miles during the week. I had three interruptions during that ten year span: meniscus surgery, breaking my neck in a horse accident, and an Achilles overuse injury. I thoroughly disliked time off and not being able to run on the trail.

Has my addiction been negative for me is a question? I don’t think so as my health is good, good energy, good friends, and good relationships, have  passion, and I am admired. So, I plan to keep on going. Today’s tapering trail run was close to three hours  in nature with my wire haired white terrier Digger. Next Saturday, on to Malibu for a 50 K. Tomorrow Linda, Tony, Debbie, and I are going kayaking. So, I have a day off from running.  I don’t think I will have withdrawal symptoms. Check the next blog to find out.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Barry Bonds,Osteoarthritis,Aging,and Competing

Barry Bonds is the greatest home run hitter in modern baseball. He hit more home runs than anyone else in this game. He is no slouch in the field or running the bases either. There is no controversy about him being a tremendous athlete. Barry, so what if they place an asterisk next to your home run total? Did you take legal steroids during your career? The jury is divided on the question however, the public probably less so. Barry, I realize you had injuries and that likely you had top medical treatment. "To say that you didn’t know what your trainer was doing to you sounds stupid" says Tony .I don’t think you’re stupid. Saying "yes" is a better way to go. Too bad you can’t undo it.
Today, Tony and I ran a 10 mile tapering training run on Western States trail. That means that the entire run is not as fast as a regular training run. The tapering started because we have a run in Malibu on the 23rd. Tony is running the 20 K "call me a wimp if you like but I don’t want to beat up my body" and I am running a 50 K. The question I have for Barry Bonds is "are you going to be able to run a 50 K 25 years from now"? I hope that you will be able and that the things that you injected into your body will not come back to haunt you in the future. I figure that you did what you did because you wanted to continue to be the best at what you were doing at that time.
Related to health, treatment, and fitness is an article in the Wall Street Journal, April 12, 2011. The title: Doctors’ New Advice for Joint Pain: Get Moving by Laura Landro. In the article, Kate Lorig at Stanford University "the most dangerous exercise you can do when you have arthritis is none". According to the research, each extra pound of body weight adds the equivalent of 4 pounds to the knees.
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that recently has shown up more in young and middle-age adults as a result of obesity and sport injuries. Currently, treatment is focusing on weight loss combined with exercises aimed at improving joint function and building up muscles that support the joints. Consider the scope of the problem as this disease affects some 27 million Americans and leads to 632,000 surgical joint replacements a year. This number is expected to grow as the population ages: one and two adults will likely develop knee osteoarthritis before the age of 85. The risk increases to two in three adults who are obese. If you are going to reach age 85, you better start to do something. Stretching exercises found in Bob Anderson’s book is helpful as well as taking Tony’s advice and not beating up your body. Find the right physical activity for you. Consider paddling or bike riding. A trial of glucosamine – chondroiton in 2006 found that 22% of the people in the study had significant pain relief. However, in 2008, a different study found that the supplements are no better in slowing loss of cartilage of the knee compared with placebo according to lead researcher Daniel Clegg. He recommends that patients discuss with their doctor whether the supplements are an option.
My buddy, Dr. Wayne Fiske told me that he believes age has something to do with it because he’s afraid that things can wear out. We are both the same age. One difference when we were younger is that he beat up his body with karate. So currently, I am in superior physical condition. I spend my time with exercise, health, and competition and he spends his time doing good photography. So for me, in one sense age has nothing to do with it.
Just yesterday, I had communication with Linda Rodgers my running partner in 2001 and 2002. At that time, Linda was married and living in Greenwood which is "Beyond Cool". Linda and I ran and ran and ran and preparation for the Western states 100. Chapter 9 in my book tells about some of our experiences. Linda has completed the Tevis, Western States 100, and the Hawaiian Ironman. This attractive female is currently selling real estate in Los Altos, California. For those of you looking for an athletic, energetic realtor, contact her at
Lrodgers@interorealestate.com

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Lance Armstrong, Western States100 Mile Run,and Cavemen

 Lance Armstrong, Western States, and Cavemen

What does Lance Armstrong, Western States, and cavemen have in common? Just today, Tony handed me an article titled “Live like the Cavemen and Live Much Longer”. This article was written by Dr. Philip Goscienski. According to Dr. Phil, modern hunter-gatherer societies today have insignificant amounts of obesity, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, and cancer. He adds that even in the absence of medical care these people are often healthier than the rest of us.

Our ancestors gathered wild fruits which had more fiber, more antioxidants, and fewer sugars than the fruits we buy in supermarkets. These Stone Age individuals expended between 3,500 to 5,000 calories a day. They didn’t do exercise because their lives were exercise. These people were lean and strong unlike many of us today. For example 25% of Americans over the age of 65 need assistance in getting out of bed or bathing. That is one troubling statistic. Another statistic is that only about 10% of Americans regularly get intense physical exercise; and our level of daily activity is about 75% less than it was at the beginning of the 20th century. These are the facts that we need to remember. To be healthy, then eat the right foods and be active. The more active the better for you.

On our three-hour trail run, Tony and I found Trent Klasna on the trail near his property. Trent is a former professional bike racer turned farmer. He grows fruits and vegetables and appears to like what he’s doing.  He is likely in his late 30s. Previously, I asked him about Lance Armstrong. He told me he had not talked with him recently but mentioned he was in contact with another member of the US postal team. It makes sense that Trent works outdoors, continues to be extremely active, and involved in growing his crops without pesticides. You might ponder what Lance is going to do after bicycle racing? My guess is he’s going to stay active and eat healthy. The lesson is to eat healthy.

After leaving Trent, we took a “new” trail and eventually reached Goat Hill. Then to Browns Bar which is part of the Western States trail. Once we got down to the river trail, we turned toward the infamous Maine Bar or Ball Bearing in the opposite direction from the quarry. Then we reached Maine Bar. After climbing up this rugged, rocky, and twisty, trail with steep elevation, Tony remarked “this is harder than Pig Farm” a trail from last week’s run which is part of the Cool Ride and Tie. Reaching the top of Maine Bar is the 16 mile marker Of the Western States trail. From there it’s about a mile from my home. Another good run with Tony. Thanks’ Tony.



Monday, April 11, 2011

Cronan Ranch with Debbie and Jade

video
I thought I would share my day with Debbie and Jade at Cronan Ranch. It seemed like everybody came out to enjoy the day. Watch the Video it tells it all.


Sunday, April 10, 2011

Can Exergames Be The Answer?

Exergames, a video game that requires physical movement to play might be the answer for all those couch potato kids according to some researchers. The article appeared in the March 21, 2011 Time magazine written by Alice Park. These so-called researchers asked kids 9 to13 years of age to play video games that included: Dance Dance Revolution, Will Boxing, and Light Space Bug Invasion. According to the study, playing these games for 10 minutes is equal to walking on a treadmill for 10 minutes as far as expending energy and burning calories. The researchers reported that overweight kids liked these games. The authors suggested that school systems could start testing exercise video games to determine if it does boost kid’s physical activity and fitness. I guess it would take the place of PE.  They also hoped that indoor fun might translate into active play outdoors like sports.
Yes, that’s what we need is to have kids play video games in school and hope that it translates into physical activity and  better health-lower heart disease and lower diabetes. I think this is idiotic. For those of you who know about psychological principles from learning and field theory realize that the answer is not simply more sitting on a chair. Learning theory suggests that modeling plays an important part in learning. We learn by watching and modeling what our parents and role models do. If children and teenagers see their parents sitting at a desk, being overweight, and not taking care of themselves then more likely they are going to copy their parent’s behavior. Overweight and out of shape adults or teachers are likely to be ignored. It is the doing that is important not necessarily what we say.
There is a classic study that I learned  from Jacob Kunin one of Kurt Lewin’s students. In this study, the class was asked to draw cats employing the example drawn on the chalk board. We continued to draw and draw and draw. After maybe 10 to 15 minutes, we analyzed the results. Using satiation as a model, it was obvious what happened to our drawings. The shapes were distorted and fragmentation existed throughout. In other words, if we repeat an activity over and over and over we become bored, lose our focus, and easily distracted. How long might it take those kids to become satiated with those video games as far as exercise is concerned?  Are video games going to be the model for the lifestyle of our young?
If you pay attention to the blog, there’s a title called Favorite Trails. These trails can be downloaded for your viewing. Also, you’ll notice more and more trails on the blog. You know why we don’t run the same trail every day. You heard the expression “variety is the spice of life”. That expression is so true. Create variety in your life not satiation.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Running Stagecoach

Running Stagecoach
                                                                                                                                                                    
Today’s run was on the Stagecoach trail. It is a 8.61 mile run from the Auburn Dam Overlook. When I arrived at 9:30 am, the parking lot was full I forgot the AR 50 run is today. I wanted to push my pace today so I started out for what was for me a fast pace. I felt good and was running well. I got to the bottom of Stagecoach (about a 2-mile uphill) and kept up the same effort. I was a little surprised that I was still feeling good with no strain at all going up hill. I got to the top in what felt like good time, hit the pavement and ran the rest of the way back through Auburn. I finished in a time of 1hr 40 min and was feeling pretty good about that time. I got back just in time to see the winner of the AR 50 come in. He finished in 5hr 55min, a 7min per mile pace. My pace for the 8.63 miles was a 11:36 pace, not a 7 min pace, but I still felt good about my run.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Aging


Aging is the gradual process of maturation from childhood into adulthood, which then turns to a decline in middle life an advanced age. There are five primary causes of aging: Glycation ( progressive damage to the body caused by high blood sugar per Dr. Andrew Weil) ; Chronic subclinical Inflammation( this is the underlying causes of a number of diseases  and is an increasing threat to our health as the aging process diminishes the body’s defense mechanisms against  it; poor diet and lifestyle choices contribute); Oxidation(molecules with unstable oxygen atoms that have given up one of their electrons during energy release are called free radicals);Methylation( process whereby some genes are activated and others are turned off during one’s lifetime-high levels of cortisol are known to interfere with the efficiency so stress reduction is important); Telomere Reduction( repeating sequences of DNA at the end of chromosomes that regulate in a fixed manner how many times a body cell will divide-chromosomes that can’t divide cause cell aging and death-exercising, eating a healthy diet with lots of fruits and veggies, keeping a normal weight, and controlling inflammation have all been shown to be associated with longer telomeres and longer life spans).
According to Dr. Michele Eslami , Department of geriatrics, UCLA school of medicine “genetics do play a role and sometimes so does luck; but in my experience, patients who have led healthy lifestyles-no smoking, not overweight, I knew she did regular exercise, travel, regular reading, and even those who continue working past the normal retirement age-seem to age more successfully”.
Over 60% of all deaths are due to  preventable diseases: heart disease, stroke, cancer, and diabetes. It is important to understand that the risk factors for these 4 diseases include lifestyle choices. The information provided so far is based on a continuing education class that I attended titled "Successful Aging in Men & Women".
“It Has Nothing to Do with Age “focus is on living a healthy lifestyle. The individuals, I interviewed, certainly support that notion. In reading this book, the reader will get insight into the lifestyles of these seniors. Hopefully, these models will provide information as well as inspiration. It is important to step away from our electronics generated society into the world of nature. It seems that many of us have  lost that balance in how we live our life. We need to be more active especially in the outdoors as we age.
For those wanting another technique in relaxation an article in the Wall Street Journal, April 5, 2011 had a picture of a mat with nail like plastic spikes. Team Shakti AB of Sweden puts 6000 spikes on its main mat. Apparently, by lying down with face up with the spikes in contact with your back and neck for 5 to 10 minutes, an individual can relieve stress, in neck, back, and even reduce insomnia. Those of you that are interested find that article on page D4. This product might be a good way to reduce your cortisol levels.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Today’s Run

Today’s Run

I arrived at Frank’s house only to find snow on the ground. When I left home this morning, the sun is shining. Did I bring my gloves?  No!  I’ll bet you can guess what the trail is like this morning . Yes, it is cold, wet and sloppy. Frank wants to do a short run. I reluctantly agree since I’m so compassionate. The trail run is somewhere between 4 and 5 miles and I think it  is closer to 4. Frank thinks it’s closer to five.
With a little over a mile ago, Frank said he is feeling good. With a smile on my faceJ, I picked up the pace and ran well. Of course, I beat him to the finish. I then relaxed and about 3 to 4 minutes later he arrived. He told me I was running well. I said you are running faster.

Ironman-Lew Hollander

Dr. Ironman-Lew Hollander
As many of you know, Lew is a PhD physicist, an endurance rider, an Ironman competitor, an ultra runner, and a ride and tie competitor (21 world championships). He’s ridden over 11,000 competitive endurance miles, has over 150 wins and best conditioned awards and is an AERC Hall of Fame inductee. After completing the 100 mile Western States run in 1984, he began looking for something else to do. He discovered triathlons and then completed 21 out of 21 Hawaiian Ironman’s. And in 2010 has the distinction of being the oldest ride and tie competitor in the long course and the second oldest finisher in the Hawaiian Ironman. His athletic resume is  outstanding and unbelievable.

Lew is a man of many stories. One story he tells is when he was about nine years of age. At nine, he is mixing concoctions that result in making a big bang. He is pleased with his ability to make a bomb “go bang “in his neighborhood. Even then he wants to make a contribution to society and his country. Well, what did he do? This young lad sends a letter to the State Department describing howw to make a bomb explode by mixing certain chemicals. The State Department likes receiving expertise and writes him back. The letter is addressed to Mr. Hollander and says something to the effect of “we want to be able to explode the bomb when WE want to”. Unfortunately, that letter is misplaced.

Another insight into this man’s personality is when he is an officer and assigned to the US Naval Radiology Defense Radiation Laboratory in San Francisco. Even though he is working with the intellectual elite from nearby universities and with noble prize winners, one might think that would be a highlight for this young 21 -year-old commissioned naval officer. The way he tells it he receives great satisfaction and honor by being allowed to play shortstop on the enlisted men’s baseball team. Being an officer allowed him to play shortstop even though his natural position is playing second base.

Lew continues to compete in sports, develop patents, write and present scientific paper’s (in physics and semi conductor research etc.), and to give back to others. In fact let me suggest that you consider reading his short novel “And Chocolate Shall Lead Us”. This novella is about climate change and using rational and scientific thinking to combat this worldwide problem. There is a lot to this man and we want to continue to hear from him. Keep it up Lew.
Pat Browning told me “Lew is one of the toughest men, ever. He doesn’t look like it, but he is a brain”.
Visit his web site at: http://lewhollander.com/

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Pig Farm Again

Today Tony and I went back to the Olmsted  trail to recalibrate loop one on the Cool Ride and Tie to  be held on October,1, 2011. I want to add more mileage  to this loop. So Tony and I ran the loop and  used his GPS for exact mileage. According to his GPS, this loop is 12.2 miles. A good part of the additional  mileage is water for the horses at the Paige Harper trough  and the bad is the rocky trail during that part of the race . I am going to suggest that the competitors walk their horse during that part of the trail. I ran better today than yesterday. Tony told me that in the past he would run up Pig Farm.I told him that I didn't believe him. So when I beat  him to the beginning of that part of the trail  I, felt good. He knew I was racing but elected not to pass me.  So he started running up the trail and I knew he wasn't going to stop. So I figured, I might as well run up the trail also. I got to the top and didn't see him. I  thought he ran the remaining part that included what is called the Training Hill . My goal was to stop at the top of Pig Farm.

 As I proceeded the rest of the way, a female runner was heading towards me. I asked her if she saw Tony. She said  to me that he said "tell the old guy to run faster". How is that for empathy, compassion, and  consideration ? Anyway, I finally reached Tony and found him sitting on a rock. The next stop is to get state approval. The application has been turned in. Just waiting to hear from them.
(From Tony) I did have a little compassion I did wait for you and then walked the last two miles in.J


I just finished an article on Lew Hollander that I am submitting  for publication to ride and tie. He has completed over 11,000 endurance miles and is in the AERC Hall of Fame. He completed Western states in 1984, has 21 out of  21 Hawaiian Iron man completions and is the second oldest to complete the Hawaiian Iron man .He  is the oldest to complete the long course at the world championship ride and tie in 2010 .


Lew also is a brain and has expertise in physics-atomic weapon testing , semi conductor research  etc. included in his resume. He has many patents and presents and publishes papers to scientific societies. Not bad for this 80 year young phenom. His story is in chapter 10 of my manuscript.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

It is not supposed to be easy

Just today, Tony and I were running at the Olmsted. The plan was  to run the 12 mile loop for the Cool Ride and Tie to be held on  October  1, 2011. Shortly after coming up difficult, snarly, steep Pig Farm trail, I yelled out to Tony "this is not easy". Tony replied "it's not supposed  to be easy". I thought that his reply would be a good  title for today. Trail running is not easy. In fact, trail running  is difficult. Periodically, trail runners develop injuries. Just yesterday, I met with Tom an endurance, ride and tie, and trail runner. He just had his fourth meniscus surgery and meets with the surgeon again this Thursday. Unfortunately, for Tom he is  not able to currently run. He is only 59 . By the way, he claims that he was faster than Tony.(only in his dreams)  Tony disputes it.

I remember talking with Geno  Ortiz a massage therapist on the big island of Hawaii. Geno told me that people who competed in triathlons have fewer injuries than trail runners. He attributed that to the cross training ( biking and swimming ). They don't develop overuse injuries like the trail runners. Periodically, I think of biking, jump roping, treadmill etc. as a possible cross training activity. However for me, I seem to like trail running the best. I make sure to stretch  and incorporate Bob Anderson's list of stretches. I also purchased orthotics. I  recommend  stretching and orthotics  to all you runners.

My book "It Has Nothing To Do With Age " has undergone the editing process. I am now looking to have it published. It will be including segments in Bogs to come. I welcome your feedback and input.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Cool Ride and Tie

The sixth annual Cool Ride & Tie has been scheduled for October 1,2011. A special thanks to Tony for both walking and using his GPS to determine the distance . It took him over four hours on Friday to complete his endeavor. The start is at the Foothills Ranch in Cool. We have one loop that totals about 5 miles in distance and a second loop that totals about 11 miles and includes the notorious Pig farm trail. At this point, I'm thinking about a 5 mile race, an 11 mile race, a 16 mile race, and either a 22 or 27 mile race. The long course distance is yet to be established. Tony and I plan to run the 11 mile distance Tuesday morning. Monday morning I will submit the paperwork to the state for their approval. I will keep you posted.

On March 21, 2011 Wall Street Journal ran an article titled "Bikes That Deserve a Hand". Essentially, more riders are using what's called hand cycling. Instead of peddling, the individual can use is arms instead of his feet. According to the article, the tricycle is becoming more popular for racing, exercising, and recreation. Apparently, this is a good option for anyone who's lower body is compromised but retains good hand and arm strength. This sounds like it could be a good cross training method as well. It is obvious that this is not good for trail use. Bike-- on.com is an online store that you can check out. After I finish this blog I'm going to do that myself. This form of cardio seems interesting and especially good for developing upper body strength.

In 2010, the number of individuals completing US marathons set a record and for the first time reached over a half million(507, 000). Join the crowd and do it with your feet or with a hand cycle. There is no excuse. Saying, my knees are bad etc. is just not good enough.

Friday, April 1, 2011

The art of relaxation

Knowing how to breathe is associated with proper breathing techniques. If you haven't paid attention to your breathing today then you are likely to be tense or uptight. You might ask why is relaxation important? Relaxation or deep breathing helps with cardiovascular fitness and cognitive development. A recent article in the March 28, 2011 edition of the Wall Street Journal told about the addition of yoga to the elementary school curriculum. The principal at the elementary school in Southern California "she has seen how calm and centered students are after practicing the techniques" . If this is good for kids it might be good for you too. There are many techniques in learning how to breathe properly. Yoga, progressive relaxation, self hypnosis, meditation, and autogenics are a few techniques that can help you reduce the stress in your life.



While on the trail, I monitor my breathing as well as body tenseness. I hold two handheld water bottles and periodically rediscover that I'm clutching the bottles. It is important to run relaxed and at ease. Other parts of your body can tense up or start to hurt. So, I pay attention to my body and my breathing. Even when I'm not running, I pay attention to determine areas of discomfort. Deep breathing is important for psychological and physical well-being. Do yourself a favor and learn how to breathe properly.


Briefly, feed back about Loreto is related to water. If you like to boat, fish, snorkel, swim, kayak or whale watch that is the place to go. Touching a grey whale is a neat experience. The newborn come right to your boat. They seem curious and willing to allow you to touch them. When they've had enough they simply swim away. In addition to interacting with the whales, I ran in the desert and along the seashore. Weather was warm so I got my heat training. I understand that the weather in the foothills was cold rainy and some snow. I'm pleased that I missed that.