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Running Slowly on Purpose

Monday, March 15, 2010

Subject #1: Running Slowly on Purpose

On Saturday I went to the local high school track with my wife, Annette, and daughter, Katie. I wanted to do some base training.


I am trying to increase my endurance. I wanted to run for 5 or 6 miles on the resilient track surface and relax a bit. I set a nice easy pace at 9:30 min/mile and just motored along.

Predictably, Katie took off like a rocket. She took off on a cross-country run. My wife followed Katie. Katie slowed down to run with her mom. My wife's nickname is "Putt-Putt". She had that nickname when I met her. "Putt-Putt" really fits her. She has one gear when she runs. It is a good gear. She can run all day, all night, and into next week without getting tired. We all call her pace the "Putt-Putt" gear. She can sprint when she feels like it. However, she always reverts back to the Putt-Putt gear.

Katie came back to the track and blew past me. She looked back and said, "Come on old-man, keep up!" I knew she was going to say that! After I got done with my 5 mile base run, Katie wanted me to run an 800M sprint with her. I declined. I did do a couple of 200M sprints and one 400 meter sprint with her. Katie clobbered me. I am proud of her.

Subject #2: World Champion Triathlete

I have a co-worker, Mike Dibens, who is married to perhaps the best female triathlete in the world, Julie Dibens.



Mike sends e-mail with Julie's latest victories to everyone in the company. She is amazing. I met Julie at the office Christmas party. Julie is very cool.

Subject #3: Pre-Race Meal

The night before a race is carbo-loading time. Ok, carbo-loading is probably more psychological physiological than physical. Who knows? Anyway, vegetarian bean soup is standard fare the night before a race. I buy 10-bean soup from the Women's Bean Project.


These soup mixes are extremely high quality and signed by the woman that assembled the package. How cool is that?

Subject #4: Speed Training

I am on a roll. Here are some speed training routines guaranteed to make you run faster and jump higher. Except for the first few routines, most of these are pretty difficult. As a matter of fact, these routines were compiled by my children while competing in high school and college. Try 'em - you will hate them! Remember:

“That which does not kill us makes us stronger. “ Friedrich Nietzsche

Nietzsche died when he was 55. What does that say?

(Note: Routines 1, 2 and 3 are not bad. Routines 4, 5 and 6 are wicked, mean and nasty!)

(1) FARTLEK (complete Workout - easy)
Jog 5 minutes
Run 1 minute at fast 5K pace
Continuous movement for 30 minutes

(2) 400 METER REPEATS (complete workout – moderately difficult)
Five minute warm-up (easy jog or brisk walk– optional stretch)
Run 4 x 400 meter repeats at a fast 5K pace.
Jog for 400 meters between repeats
Cool down with 800 meters of jogging

(3) ACCELERATION STRIDES (performed after normal daily workout - increased difficulty)
Run 100 meters by starting at a slow jog and gradually increase speed to 100 percent effort.
Walk briskly for 100M meters between repeats
Repeat 4 times.
Cool Down – 2 to 5 minute walk
Total Distance = 800M

(4) THIRTY-THIRTY-THIRTIES (performed after normal daily workout - high difficultly)
Jog for 30 meters, Stride 30 meters. Sprint 30 meters. (total of 90 meters)
Rest 30 seconds
Repeat 4 to 8 times.
Cool Down – 2 to 5 minute walk

(5) FORTY-TENS (Performed after normal daily workout – extremely difficult)
Jog 40 seconds, Sprint 10 seconds
Repeat 10 to 14 times
Continuous Movement
Cool Down – 2 to 5 minute walk

(6) DIAMONDS (complete workout – insanely difficult)
Five minute warm-up (easy jog or brisk walk– optional stretch)
Sprint 200M
Jog 200M
Sprint 400M
Jog 200M
Sprint 800M
Walk 400M
Jog 1,600M
Walk 400M
Sprint 800M
Jog 200M
Sprint 400M
Jog 200M
Sprint 200M
Jog 200M
Sprint 200M
Cool Down – 2 to 5 minute slow jog

Total Distance = 6K


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LASOLLER 3/27/2010 7:22PM

    I really enjoyed your blog. Just this week, I read the trifuel article. I am toying with the idea of training with a HRM. Do you train with one? I also enjoyed your links about your tri friend. Very impressive. Which bean soup is your favorite?

I love that your family run together. Steve and I usually run the same events, but we train at different times of the day, I am a morning person and he is an afternoon runner.

I see you live in Colorado, have you done the BolderBoulder? Steve and I have ran it twice. We just make a vacation out of it.

Thank you for your supportive words in my tri adventure. Tomorrow we are attending swimming drill with the tri club.

Have a great weekend.

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HARRINGTON5 3/16/2010 10:16AM

    I just think it is the coolest thing that you and your family share the same interests. What a pleasure that must be. Your daughter sounds like a typical kid taunting her dad and your wife is just precious. I would love to have her skill and run all day at any speed. I make 15 bean soup all the time and I just love it. Thanks for sharing all the great information.

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HEALTHY4JEANNE 3/15/2010 11:34PM

    good for you. If I tried your work out I would be scraping my lungs off the track.

I love that your wife's name is putt putt. I am with her, slow and steady!

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GAZELK 3/15/2010 9:28PM

    It's fun to run fast, but I can't do it for that long. I think I would die if I did the diamonds.

Also, not sure about the bean soup. Sounds delicious, but might not be the best food to have eaten the night before you'll be runnng in a pack of strangers. Do THEM a favor and go for something without beans :-)

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You thought that was fast? I thought it was fast. Well was it?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

I like the movie "Maverick" with Mel Gibson and Jodie Foster. In the movie Brett Maverick is playing cards with the notorious John Wesley Hardin. Hardin goes for his gun. Maverick does a lightning fast draw and points his gun at Hardin's nose, Annabelle, played by Jodie Foster, leans over to Hardin and asks, "You thought that was fast? I thought it was fast. Well was it?"

I just love that line!

Eleven months ago I started running. I had lost some weight and thought I might be able to run without putting too much strain on my body. I joined the "C25K - Running for Beginners!" SparkTeam. I faithfully adhered to the C25K program. I was surprised how well the program worked. I started adding mileage. I was a runner again!

I ran a lot.

In May 2009 I did my first timed 5K. My time was 29:54! I ran 5K in under 30 minutes by 6 whole seconds! I was really happy! I decided to set a totally unreasonable goal of running a 5K in under 24 minutes. I lost some more weight and got faster. In July 2009 I posted a 26:42. I was jazzed. I was under 27 minutes by 18 seconds! A week later I hurt myself on an 8 mile run over uneven terrain. I was diagnosed with Iliotibial band syndrome. I spent 6 weeks in physical therapy. I struggled to get back up to speed.

Two weeks ago I traveled to Phoenix on business. I took my running stuff and my Garmin 305. I went for a run after I arrived and really pushed it. I ran 5K in 24:36! Holy smokes! I am so close to my goal.

I rested a day. I found a great place to run - a nice flat dirt road along a canal. As I dressed for my run I saw myself in the mirror. I had those runner veins lacing my legs. I also had six pack abs! I kind of looked, well, like a runner!

I walked and jogged a little down to the canal to warm-up. When I got to the canal I saw that endless stretch of dirt. I took a big breath. I gritted my teeth. I hit the start button on my timer and launched myself down the road. The sun was warm. I was moving well. I glanced at my timer. My pace was 7:29. I knew that was a good pace. I was running smoothly. At 2.6 miles my timer read 19:40. All I had to do was cover the last ˝ mile in under 4:20 to finish below 24 minutes. I did the math in my head - 8:40 min/mile pace. I thought, “I can do that. A half mile is not far.” All of a sudden I could feel myself slowing down. “Oh no!” I hit the wall! I noticed there were telephone poles on the side of the road. I just tried to pick-off telephone poles. I told myself, “Run fast to the next pole”. I was out of gas. I felt like giving up. But I could make it to the next pole and the pole after that. I glanced at my timer - 3.07 miles. I told myself, “Keep running.” My legs felt like lead. The distance display seemed to be frozen. I heard the voice in my head, “Keep running.“ I was hurting. The distance display said 3.09 miles. “Keep running! Almost there.” I passed 3.1 miles. Just a bit more. Finally the display showed 3.11 miles! I hit the timer stop button. I slowed to a walk. Sweat stung my eyes. I blinked twice and wiped my eyes. The timer showed 23:12! OMG! I ran the last ˝ mile in 3 minutes and 32 seconds!

“I thought it was fast. Well was it?" Maybe.

Is 21 minutes flat possible? I don't really know. It’s worth a try. Then I will be fast.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GAZELK 3/15/2010 9:31PM

    That seems really fast. Maybe you could have beaten your daughter in that 5K. You are Mr. Speed!

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DAVIDMU89 3/15/2010 8:55AM

    Very impressive.

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SARA_ANN12 3/15/2010 8:06AM

    Wowza! I just did my first 5k and was blown away by 34:04! I saw the results of this race and the fastest male was about 18:56, female was 19:00ish so I think 21 is doable. For someone like me though, I know that it would probably take me 6 months just to get down to the 30:00 mark! All in all though, I know if I kept at it- I could eventually (even if it did take a year!) get down more and more. So yes, I think it's totally doable if you have the desire to do so- it looks like you do :)

But kudos on 23:12--that's speedy!

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JADERUNNING 3/15/2010 7:38AM

    Wow! You are a machine! emoticon

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HEALTHY4JEANNE 3/15/2010 6:59AM

    Great job digging deep.
Right now my running is on hold till my asthma gets under control. I am limping on short walk runs.
But you did awesome.

You should check out Kayakid's spark page. he is inspiring just like you!
:) Jeanne

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SMARTIEBEE 3/15/2010 12:21AM

    Yep! I think that was fast! I ran 11.1 miles today at a 12:32 pace, and I thought THAT was fast. I guess it was for me - but holy cow - 23:12 is really fast!

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GSCOTTC 3/15/2010 12:09AM

    Very cool. Thanks for sharing.

Take care


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KGPOSSIBLE 3/15/2010 12:08AM

    That is a great time! 24:00 is my next 5k goal. I've been doing 10k's and my best 5k is a little over 26 minutes but you know how hard it is to shave off a minute even if it doesn't sound like much.

I think fast is all relative....it depends on the crowd you hang with...lol!!!!!!!

Great blog!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

and emoticon!!


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ELYMWX 3/14/2010 11:56PM


Now you just need your kids to agree...

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HARRINGTON5 3/14/2010 11:55PM

    You are not fast,you are a blur! WOW, what a run. You are so dedicated. I don't know how you can dig deep and run like that when you are out there alone. I guess that is the difference between a true runner and someone that is just playing at it. You are awe inspiring and I'm motivated to get out and run in the morning. Thanks pal, you never cease to amaze me, Cynthia
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Oh, that is just peachy!

Friday, March 12, 2010

I signed up for a 5K race on March 20th in Highlands Ranch, Colorado. I made the mistake of telling my son Ben about this race. He exclaimed, “Dad, I have friends that running that St. Paddy’s day race! You and I can run together!”

Oh, that is just peachy!

Ben is an ex-collegian runner. He is fast. Not just recreational runner fast - he is elite runner fast! Nearly every time I run with him I end-up injured! He is 29. He can jog a 5K in under 18 minutes. He is really fast when he kicks it in high gear!

My daughter Katie called me, “Hey dad, Ben told me you are running a 5K on the 20th. I will be home on spring break and will run the race with you!”

Oh, that is just peachy!

Katie has blazing speed. Her room is full of medals and ribbons she won in high school track and cross country. She has a state championship patch on her letter jacket.

I can hear my kids now, “Come on old man - pick it up.” My reply, “Hey, this is as fast as I go!” I am not particularly slow. I run too hard when I race anyway. I don’t need my kids goading me into running way faster than I should. I am happy about this family togetherness stuff. I just can’t get over a vague feeling that my kids are running the race just to tease me!

Oh, that is just peachy!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KGPOSSIBLE 3/15/2010 12:12AM

    I love it!!!

Like I said in my comment on your other blog...being fast is all relative and it depends on the crowd you hang with.....after reading this blog I guess you better find a new crowd.... emoticon

Have a fun race!!


P.S. Don't get injured.....

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HEALTHY4JEANNE 3/14/2010 11:09AM

    This blog made me smile. My daughter is a beautiful runner. She and I can take 10 strides and she is 20 feet ahead of me. Born to run!
Just think of the memory of the day. The day you all ran it together, not just the day that they beat the old man to a pulp.
Enjoy and good luck.

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IRONGRANNIE 3/12/2010 11:45PM

    Next month I am running 2k with my 4yo granddaughter and she can run faster than me! She has to have an adult run with her because she is only 4. I hope I can keep up! Drat these speedy kids! Have fun with your kids!

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GAZELK 3/12/2010 9:07PM

    Sounds like your whole family has good running genes, so maybe you should kick into high gear during the race. Who knows, maybe there is a fast runner in you somewhere. I'm a slow runner, but have definitely gotten faster as I've lost weight. Now, I might even pass a few people during my run.

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DAVIDMU89 3/12/2010 10:50AM

I am running a 5k this weekend with 2 of my 14 year olds, I am going with the flow... if they want to push the pace .. i will let them go! Have fun, I know I will.

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ELYMWX 3/12/2010 9:12AM

    I guess they are too old to ground them for the day? Old age and treachery and all...

Good luck and enjoy the "race"!

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JOSOP2009 3/12/2010 9:02AM

    Go Slow, enjoy the race, yada yada yada. Bull!! I say it's time to remind those kids where the athleticism and good genes came from! For all us old guys, go Kick Some Butt!!!

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JADERUNNING 3/12/2010 8:43AM

    Wow!I am a slower runner and I know what you mean. My brother and I did a 1/2 marathon together and the whole while I was trying to keep up to the pace he was slowing down to. Good Luck and have fun!

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    HAAAAA! Come on, buddy....step up to that challenge...ooooorrrrr, you could just tell them you're training really hard to learn how to run SLOW. emoticon

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JACLIGHT 3/12/2010 7:16AM

    I would kill if I could run with my dad - they just want to spend time with you and do something together that y'all enjoy.

Don't take this for granted.

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1FAVOREDLADY 3/12/2010 7:08AM

    Wow, How impressive that you all are together in this. Don't worry about what they do. Tell them to go at there own pace and you will go at yours. The point is to accomplish and enjoy the race isn't it? Be gracious if they tease ya. Above all don't hurt yourself trying to impress anyone. Sorry I am so advising . It's the mothering in me. HAVE A TERRIFIC TIME !

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BDENOON 3/12/2010 6:46AM

    I don't think you will find that they are doing it to tease yo.
I think you will be pleasantly surprised to find out that this is there way of proving that they are proud of your accomplishments and believe in what it is you are doing.
I think you will find out that your kids are really proud of their dad and want to be near someone that has given them the drive to achieve.
Maybe, just maybe they think you are "just peachy"...
Enjoy the run!

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Snowshoeing and Hot Chocolate

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Chapter 1: Eating Too Much and Losing Weight

For the past 11 days I didn’t exercise much. I had too many aches and pains. I also ate exactly what I wanted. I drank beer and went out for barbecue. I ate brownies and cookies. I didn’t log a single entry into my SparkPeople nutrition tracker. I was bad! I also lost 3 pounds! I am still trying to figure that out!

Chapter 2: Running in Terrible Conditions

Yesterday I went running. I covered 3.75 miles in about 40 minutes. My training pace was 10:40 minutes/mile. I suppose I should be happy. The conditions sucked! The temperature was 14 degrees F. The running surface was snow-packed and icy. I did not have fun and was sucking wind pretty badly.

Chapter 3: Winter Sports

Like most people I have been watching the Olympics. Then it struck me -- why should I watch winter sports on the TV when I live in a Colorado winter wonderland. I can be on a Lift at Breckenridge in less than an hour. I thought I should go out and hit the slopes. Unfortunately, my wife put my ski boots in the shed, which is a black hole. I could only find one boot. The other boot is floating in outer space.

I wanted to do some Nordic skiing but I left my cross-country skiing skis at my brother’s house in Summit County. Two down, one to go!

I did have my snowshoes handy. My wife loves snowshoeing. I am not that excited about snowshoeing. I like speed and skiing is fast. Snowshoeing is not fast. At least I could find my snowshoes. I threw my snowshoes in my truck and called my Beagle.
As a local, I knew where to go to avoid other winter sports enthusiasts. I spent 2 hours snowshoeing at over 10,000 feet elevation in 10 degrees F. According to a SparkPeople, I burned over 1,600 calories. Another site dedicated to snowshoeing put the calories burned at 1466.

Here was my day. I actually had a really good time snowshoeing.

This is me in my cold weather garb. You would never guess that my ancestory is German, Dutch and Swedish.

I just pulled out of my driveway. This is the street where I live. Snow depth is about 8"

Anticipation of a great day.

Climbing up the trail - untracked paradise!

This is colder than it looks!

Mountain meadow. 10,000 feet elevation.

My tracks in the forest.

Lucas swimming in the snow.

Lunch time - Beef Jerky and a Nutrigrain Bar.

Fanny pack with food, water, Coke-a-Cola, first aid kit, matches, fire starting sticks, knife, compass, survival solar space blanket, parachute cord, and cell phone. However, the cell phone doesn't work here.

Lucas waiting for his lunch. He got a bit of Beef Jerky and a dog biscuit.

Deep in the woods. Very quiet!

Back at the truck and civilization!

Hot chocolate with marshmallows and whipped cream (250 calories). A perfect ending!

I still want to find my other downhill ski boot. I also want to get my cross-country skis from my brother. However, snowshoeing will do for now.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HEALTHY4JEANNE 3/14/2010 11:14AM

    Great Day! I love snowshoeing , my husband bought me a pair this year. My husband does not snow shoe with me, I go with my 4 year old labby he loves it.
The perfect ending would have been some peppermint snapps in the cocoa, I really am not a big drinker, but I have to have one of those a year! Especially after a 1600 calorie burn.

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MEAGANNAOMI 3/11/2010 10:57PM

    Wow, how beautiful! What a lovely work-out atmosphere! It might not have been the activity you were craving, but at least you got out there and went for it!


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HARRINGTON5 3/9/2010 9:57AM

    I love reading your blogs. The pictures are beautiful and so is Lucas! It sounds like you have found your soul mate in your wife. How wonderful to have someone that shares your same adventures. You certainly are prepared when you go out. I don't know that I would be in such good humor if I lived in that much snow. Thank you for the picturesque blog.

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DEUSMACHINA 2/24/2010 2:02AM

    What amazing pics! It's so beautiful! And even colder than it looks, eh?? Brrrrrr! Thanks for the walk!

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FOOTBALLTRENT 2/23/2010 12:50PM

    the pics are great

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ELYMWX 2/21/2010 11:46PM

    Awesome pictures!

For me, snow like this is a dream, or a memory, from my childhood...
emoticon emoticon emoticon

Here I live in the Vancouver area, right at the "Winter" Olympics, and the jokes are all about how Vancouver could hold both the Winter and Summer Olympics at the same times - more efficient that way because there would be only one set of opening and closing ceremonies.

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IRONGRANNIE 2/21/2010 10:49PM

    Oh man! That was awesome!!! I am sitting here and its 37.5 (99.9) outside and I am NOT going out and look what you did!!! I am still not going outside..... there is only so much clothing you can take off........

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LIGHTSEEKER73 2/21/2010 10:48PM

    OMG! I am soo jealous!!! I need to get me some snowshoes!!!

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ERIN1022 2/21/2010 9:55PM

    Oh man, that looks so cold! It also looks awesome.

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GAZELK 2/21/2010 9:40PM

    Wow, what a beautiful, fantastic day! My brother has been wanting me to go snowshoeing with him. If I had places like this near me, I'd go in a heartbeat. I'm so jealous.

I too like skiing because it's faster, but I've recently heard of shoeshoe running, which sounds kind of interesting.

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    Great pics! Thanks for sharing.

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Incoherent ramblings - I want to be a grown-up

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

I went running today. I generally list a summary of my run in terms of distance, time and pace. I also list temperature, wind chill and humidity. I note the location and altitude. I keep track of my performance with my Garmin timer. Here is a less scientific summary of my run:

Time: Darn near dark
Location: Icy nightmare hell
Training Goal: Keep moving to keep my brain from freezing (unsuccessful)
Total Distance: One foot in front of the other until I collapse (not very far)
Ave Pace: Slow and slower than slow
Company: Alone (No one else is so stupid to run when birds refuse to fly)
Total Time: Eternity of pain
Weather conditions: Cold, damn cold
Elevation: Nosebleed zone
Post workout meal: Beer and chocolate chip cookies (Comfort food)


I forgot to tighten my right shoe lace before I started running. My foot was swimming inside my shoe. I didn't notice my shoe lace was loose until my frikin foot exploded!

You ask, "Hey Bruce, when did you start running?" I answer, “During the Nixon administration." You ask, "When did you learn to tie your own shoe laces?" I answer, "I will let you know if I ever do!"

Someday I may become a grown-up!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GAZELK 2/14/2010 12:37AM

    LOL. I had to laugh, because I've had the same experience. In the winter, an untied shoelace is almost the worst thing that can happen to your run. You're bundled up like the Michelin Man and have to do something surgical like tie your shoe, which requires stopping, removing gloves, etc....sucks big time.

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HARRINGTON5 2/11/2010 2:09PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

It doesn't sound like much fun, but it sure cracked me up to read it! Don't be so hard on yourself. I thought you were just striving to put a little laughter in our day.

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    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Sniffle...that was hysterical. Thanks for the laugh at your expense...I needed that!

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JADERUNNING 2/10/2010 6:14AM

    Company- I was right behind you! I was thinking "this is insane" but I kept on going. Glad to see you out there!

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JUSTMISHY 2/10/2010 2:23AM

    Who wants to be a grown-up! It's highly over rated! Thanks for the laugh!

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BOOPSTER69 2/10/2010 1:26AM

    Ditch "grown up ville" we are all having more fun here! Thanks for the blog! emoticon

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ELYMWX 2/10/2010 12:15AM

    When people ask your wife "how many children do you have" how does she answer?

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IRONGRANNIE 2/10/2010 12:03AM

    Why? You are much more entertaining the way you are ;)

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