Friday, March 31, 2006

Countdown to extinction

I ate a huge breakfast, and I'm in the middle of a rather large lunch. Later, I will fill up again for dinner.

This is my regiment each Friday before a long, Saturday morning run. Tomorrow is 18 miles -- my longest ever. The good news is this: my leg and butt muscles don't hurt as bad as last week, and I'm generally feeling good. The bad news? I frightened of running this distance. I scared I'll get really, really hungry. Or badly have to pee at mile 13 when I'm out in rural Tumwater. Or just won't be able to finish it. Eek!

I heard Rammstein's "Du hast mich" on the drive to get more allergy meds today. It's a much better song than I remembered. Favorite parts: when he yells, "Nein!" and the bleepy, Intellivision-like noises near the end of the song. There should be legislation requiring all aggro-metal to include Germans and/or German lyrics.

Today: outdoor walk (sunshine? yes!)
Tomorrow: 18 mile run

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

"Do I look like I drink drip coffee?"

A woman standing in front of me at Starbucks this morning was accidentally handed my grande Guatemalan coffee. She scoffed at the barista, "Do I look like I drink drip coffee?" Oh, snap! Sorry we all don't enjoy $6, sugar-laden, chai-loaded, labor-intensive chick drinks, lady. By the way, your haircut is unfortunate.

This has been a triumphant week for Minneapolis musicians of the 80s. First, the Replacements record a couple new songs for a great hits record. Now, Prince's new one lands at #1 on the charts. I have not heard it yet, but I read that only about half of it's good.

I ran for about 35-40 minutes tonight, but will not be working out tomorrow, per the trainer's instructions. The run was good, and my legs do not hurt like they did last week. I'm beginning to ready myself for Saturday's 18-mile run by eating a ton of food.

Today: 40 minute run
Tomorrow: nothing

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Mega post edition: OMG! 'Mats reunite! OMG! Brianna's going to hang with Tommy Stinson, and might soon be "basic cable famous"!

From the Walsh Files:

Jim writes: "Here's a new picture of the Replacements and Josh Freese (thanks to 'Mats' fan John Wolf for the link). Brothers got together at Ed Ackerson's studio recently to record a new tune for the forthcoming 'Mats box set, which has been delayed for who knows why. Maybe my liner notes for All Shook Down sucked too much."

In other equally unbelievably fantastic news, Brianna of CantGetOutOfWhatImInto fame, has been asked to judge a battle of the bands. Her co-judge? Replacements bassist and current GNRer Tommy Stinson. It's apparently for JackFM in the Twin Cities. Here's a Gmail transcript of our elated, non-sensical chat on the subject:

me: whattabout this battle of the bands thing?
Brianna: he looked at my MySpace thing, too!!
it;s with Jack FM
won't beleive who is gonna be there
so, I am talking to this chick who organizes it
and ALL I took away from it was
me: fgO[W=[Gitpeio4g
me: OMG!!????
Brianna: zsm,dbgkufhguih

Okay, so we weren't making much sense at the time. But you had to be there.

Brianna's blog has also attracted the interest of a MTV casting director, and Minneapolis native, who wants her for a spot on a new reality show where aspiring young rock writers vie for a job at Rolling Stone. The dude left a comment on her blog, and even tagged on his phone number. It's for real.

And if that wasn't enough good news for the day, I read that Chuck Klosterman is releasing a book of his previously publishing magazine writing. It's slated for an August release. Thanks to Fimoculous for telling me this.

P.S. Brianna's on the right.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Never a day late, but ... Plus, so about this whole marathon thing ...

We've got lots of catching up to do, rabbits.

I just got back from the grocery where, among other things, I bought, you guessed it, bananas! Anyway, I go up to the cashier. He rings up my purchases, and the total comes to $4.77. I only have four one-dollar bills, and a ten, which I break. Then I laugh and say, "This is the third time this has happened in the past three days. I'm always a dollar short. That can't be good." The guy says, "Yeah" in that way that says "You and me both, man. You and me both."

I also bought a bag of ice to try and soothe my leg muscles. Yesterday's run was a little touch and go, even though it was a baby 5-miler. The muscle right below my left knee was just *tight* the whole time. Rock-solid and really unpleasant-feeling. Plus, I have some strange pain where my butt meets my back, mostly on my right side. It hurts as I type this because I'm sitting in a chair. Driving my car is the worst though. ANYWAY, the head trainer thinks its probably an over-use injury. He also gave me the eye when I told him that I'm running the full marathon, not the half. So, I'm a bit worried about next weekend's 18-mile epic. It's on this week. Good sleep. Good food. Stretching. Icing. Etc.

Message to Breanne: I didn't feel like sending you a MySpace message, but to answer your question, yes, the Breeders Title TK is a high quality album. Not nearly as good as Last Splash, but then, what is? Secondly, I commend your selection of the Walkmen's "the Rat" as your MySpace music. I was really, really into that record in D.C. last year, and would often listen to it while I washed dishes or walked to Dupont Circle. It sounds like a true New York record, if you know what I mean, and sounded really great in D.C.

I saw the fine Minneapolis band Tapes N Tapes at an in-store appearance in Seattle yesterday. Good stuff. I talked to the bassist afterwards and asked him where every was *actually* from. He said South Mpls., Mound and somewhere else. One of the guys in the band hails from Eugene, Ore. So, technically, not all Twin Citians; not an insignificant detail. Their record is good, but I'm not sure it's deserving of all the hype and love and fanfare after South by Southwest. Apparently, they played eight shows in a span of a few days there, and were dubbed the new "it" band. I don't know, I'm not sure I buy that.

So, the photo at the top of this post appears to combine two of my interests: The Gossip and an actor from Roseanne. It appears to be Becky, oldest daughter of Dan and Roseanne Connor. Becky, confident, smart, marries her Fonzie-esque boyfriend (who OD'ed in real life, btw. I know, weird, right?) and runs off to Minnesota. Becky, played by two different actresses who get a shout out in folkster/Duluthian Jamie Ness' great song "Its Kinda Like a Banjo." I still watch Roseanne whenever it's on. And I listen to the Gossip all the time. That photo is truly the nexus of my universe of likes.

Today: nothing
Tomorrow: 60-minute walk

Friday, March 24, 2006

Some things that have happened in the past 24 hours

*Last night I went to a cartoon-y metal bar for a work friend's birthday. A band was playing when I got there -- I think their name was Embrace of Death, or something -- and everyone in the group I was meeting was really drunk. I bought a drink, sat in the back and watched this band, who played an odd mix of speed metal and 4 Non Blondes(?). The lead singer's voice was of the guttural variety, as in, "I'd like some scrambled eggs, wheat toast and coffee, Blaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaccccckkk!!"The band amused me for a while, but I started looking around this bar. It had a flames of hell motif, and could seem kind of badass, I guess. Except it wasn't. The birthday girl did a song with the band, which was hilarious. I stayed until bar close and then went and got some food.

*My butt and upper leg muscles hurt real bad lately. I'm not sure exactly what's going on with them. My running buddy mentioned that I could try sitting on tennis balls and rolling around instead of massaging my butt all day at work, which, as many of you might know, can lead to some awkwardness. So I bought a can of three Wilson tennis balls today. (By the way, why do they seal tennis ball cans? Is it like a can of Chef Boyardee? Will they spoil if they aren't cut off from fresh air?) It's seemed to help a little bit, but I can't help but feel like an animal rubbing his head on a tree or fence post.

*When in the hell did breakfast cereal get so expensive? I box of Honeynut Cheerios for $5? Did I accidentally stumble into Chechnya instead of my neighborhood Safeway? I bought instead the generic "bagged" cereal that has the ghetto shelf placement, i.e. next to your feet.

Tomorrow: 5-mile tempo run

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

As usual, Brianna shows me up. Or, the case against Carlos Mencia.

Brianna's got a wonderful post about her weekend trip to Chicago to see her new fave, the Arctic Monkeys. We chatted briefly over Gmail talk the other night, promising each other we'd write about our weekends. My post turned out to be amateurish and full of typos. Brianna's is nuanced, interesting, and well, better. Check it out here:

In other news, I just saw a commercial informing me that the season premiere of Mind of Mencia will air tonight on Comedy Central. Anybody seen this? It's the weakest, lamest, poor man's version of Chappelle's Show that has ever and will ever be seen on TV. Carlos Mencia, whose entire schtick is Mexican jokes, stars in skits and stand-ups portions that scream: "I'm so EDGY!! Can't you see that I'm EDGY!! Oh my God, I just made a joke about Black people!! EDGYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!" The thing is, unlike Chapelle's Show, Mind of Mencia isn't edgy at all. It feels forced and dumbed down.

Dave Chappelle had a moment in some of his sketches where he'd look straight into the camera, smile and seemingly say: "That's right. I just said that. Can you believe this is on TV?" Mencia doesn't ever really have those moments. He just prattles on and on, seemingly saying: "This is edgy because I'm talking about race. I'm pushing your buttons. I *know* I'm pushing your buttons. EDGYYYYYYYY!!!!!"

And then I turn the channel to Nick At Nite and watch Full House.

Today: 60 minute run
Tomorrow: 60 minute walk/bike

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

November Rain was the soundtrack. Plus, is Neil Mr. Brightside?

Okay. Here we go. My three-day trip boiled down to 15 minutes of typing.

Red eye Friday morning, 1 a.m to 6 a.m.: The woman sitting across the aisle from me was traveling with her cats, and was wearing some kind of mink jacket despite the fact that she was only 47 or 48-years-old, tops. She is the first travelng cat lady I've ever encountered.

Friday: The weather was awesome, and by that I mean sunny and in the high 30s. Went for a long walk with my parents on the Lake Wobegone trail.

Saturday: Feeling refreshed from 12 hours of sleep (!), I drove to St. Cloud to meet Neil and the guys for the bachelor party. It ended up just being five of us for paintball/go-karting. Neil's brother-in-law Chris looks a lot Twins great Bert Blyleven, by the way.

So, this paintball place was run by indifferent 15-year-olds, and full of creepy, camouflage-clad dudes with $800 automatic paintball guns. We put on our masks, loaded our guns and went into the indoor course, which was probably 50-60 yards long and 25 yards wide. We faced off on opposite ends of the course, then ran behind sheds, old cars and started shooting. I ran inside a little lean-to and could hear Novemeber Rain wailing from the radio behind the counter where you buy paintballs. As Slash ripped through the song's epic third solo, I fired off paintball with reckless abandon. It was awesome.

The game's referee, who looked to be not a day over 12, let Neil and I square off one-on-one. We ran around shooting each other and trying to spend the last of our ammo.

The go-karts were wild because they went 30-40 mph. Indoors. The funniest part of the experience was a middle-aged guy who raced after us who repeatedly crashed into a certain wall. He seemed drunk after his race.

After eating dinner and drinking a few beers, we hit the bars in St. Cloud. We made a t-shirt for Neil that had a checklist of things he needed to do. Example: Smoke a Virginia Slim. He didn't seem too pleased about the whole thing until he checked off three or four at a single bar.

We finished the night at D.B. Searle's, an incredibly old bar where a band was playing. They seemed kind of bored and lazy, cranking out Sugar Ray and Weezer songs for everyone. I went up to the stage and asked the lead singer if he could give a shout-out to Neil. He said sure. Before the band took their break, the singer brought Neil up on stage, congratulated him, etc. And then they played the Killers "Mr. Brightside" -- a song I happen to like a lot. The singer changed all the "I"s in the song to "Neil"s, so "I'm Mr. Brightside" became "Neil's Mr. Brightside." It was just ridiculous, and awesome.

Sunday: Tried to shake off my first hang over in three months, and spent the day at my brother's house in Maple Grove. Played air hockey with my nephew Jack, and showed books to my nieces, Ella and Emily.

Monday morning: I finished the Pioneer Press, and then finished reading Douglas Coupland's "Girlfriend in a Coma" on the plane back to Sea-Tac. I noticed the woman sitting next to me was reading a book with a critic's comment that said, "A dazzling novel of love and ambition -- and the exquisitive world of flowers. Has great appeal." I thought for about 10 minutes about how odd of praise "has great appeal" is. Then I fell asleep.

Today: 60 minute walk
Tomorrow: 60 minute run

Monday, March 20, 2006

There will be an update soon.

Info TK on my weekend Minnesota.


Thursday, March 16, 2006

A-B-C, 1-2-3

It took forever for it to end, this lifeless Matchbox 20 tune. But when I heard the sassy sax/keyboard intro of the next song today, I knew there was a reason that I sat through three minutes of warbling, half-baked soft rock.

The song, ABC's Look of Love, will always make me wanna crank it and laugh my ass off. I first heard it on the great Northwest road trip I took with Dan, Toni and Alex in August 2003. We drove 26 hours straight from Mpls. to Seattle, then down to Portland. From P-Town, we drove the coastal highway to San Francisco.

It was the early afternoon on the fifth day of the trip. We were driving my mom's Jeep somewhere on the Oregon coast. I can't remember if I was driving or if it was Dan, but everyone was silently reading of staring out the windows.

Then I heard the beginning of "Look of Love" on a small town soft rock station. I turned it up and started laughing. Dan shot me a look of astonishment that said, "This song is awful -- awesome!"

Every verse, prechorus and bridge was met with unbridled joy and laughter. Every keyboard manuever and bit of 80s guitar (keytar?) wankery celebrated. Somewhere in the middle I blurted out, "This song is so bad that it's exciting!" And I actually called it before it happened, I could just feel that the singer -- who sounds a hell of a lot like Rick Astley -- would start talking over the music. Sure enough, towards the ends he murmurs: "And though my friends just might ask me/They say martin maybe one day you’ll find true love/I say maybe, there must be a solution/To the one thing, the one thing, we can’t find"

We couldn't stop talking about it when it ended. We pulled over in the next town, found a pay phone and actually called the station to ask the name of the song and the band.

When we arrived in San Francisco the next day or so, Dan asked to stop at Amoeba Records, ground zero for hipster record purchases in the Bay Area. After milling about in the store for about twenty minutes, he said he'd better leave before he spent all his money.

I met him back in the car where he was sitting and leafing through a CD booklet. I started the Jeep and heard the now familiar keyboard and electronic drum intro. He had bought ABC's Greatest Hits (false advertising, if I've ever seen it) and wanted to surprise us.

We rocked out to the CD whenever things got boring on the drive back to Minneapolis. I've karaoked the song in the years since, and know a surprising amount of the lyrics. And when I moved to Washington last summer, Dan put it as a "hidden track" on a mix CD he made me.

Cheers, ABC!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Three songs I heard today. Plus, Al Franken's Senate campaign platform revealed!

+ I highly recommend "Gold Lion," the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs excellent new single. Karen O belts it out, but the crazy, angular electric guitars have been replaced with acoustic grit.

+ Is T Pain this generation's answer to Motley Crue? His tune "I'm in Love with a Stripper" (yes, that's the song's actual title) carries on in the Crue's storied tradition of stripper love, while aping a generous amount of R. Kelly's "literal song title/speak singing" double threat. Sample lyrics: "Got the body of a goddess/ Got eyes butterpecan brown I see you girl/Droppin Low/She Comin Down from the ceiling/To the floor/Yeah She Know what she doin/Yeah yeah yeah/She doin that right thang/Yeah yeah yeah/I Need to get her over to my crib and do that night thang/Cause I'm in love with a stripper"

+ Who knew Prodigy was still together? Not me. I heard a remix of one of their songs (don't know which one, and I'm not bothering to look it up) while running on the treadmill tonight. It was a pretty good song with some sweet drums and synth stuff, and it, in the words of Chuck Klosterman, made me want to drive my car into an active volcano. I imagine the song would be roughly seven times more enjoyable had I heard it while high on low-grade Mexican ecstacy, twirling a glowstick in a warehouse somewhere outside of Tempe.

+ Al Franken made a hilarious appearance on The Colbert Report tonight in which he said something to the effect of "Everyone knows that Minnesotans are the best." He's still not saying if he'll run for the Senate in 2008, but at least he knows how to stroke egos. Also, he told his joke that if he decides to run he'll be the only New York Jew in the race who actually grew up in Minnesota. Ba-dum-dum

Today: 60-minute run
Tomorrow: 60-minute power walk

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Home Sweet Home. Or, I hope there isn't a snowstorm.

I'm leaving on a jet plane early, early Friday morning (1 a.m.) for Minnesota. On Saturday, I'm throwing my buddy Neil a bachelor party. A gang of seven or eight will be having a paintball war, and then go to a bar and drink. Sounds wholesome to me.

I plan to spend the rest of the time with my family, including my Dad, who I haven't seen since he had a heart attack on Jan. 31.

Two more days of work.

Today: 60-minute walk
Tomorrow: 60-minute run

Sunday, March 12, 2006

#1 Crush

Dear Lisa Loeb,

I really like your E! show, and I have a crush on you. I'm sorry that I couldn't find a more respectable photo than of this one where you're eating cake, but Google Images works in mysterious ways.

Anywho, I hope that Michael guy dumps you on next week's episode so we can date. I'm pretty sure it would work out. I mean, you'd have to move from Manhattan to Tacoma, but the two cities aren't that different, right? I made a spot next to my black acoustic guitar big enough for your pink Hello Kitty axe. Plus, I *totally* cleaned my apartment this weekend, and I put an apple cinnamon candle in my bedroom. It smells really good.

All I'm saying is just think about it. The whole point of your show is to find a man to marry, and, let's face it, we're both not getting any younger.

If all of this hasn't yet convinced you, imagine this: Everytime "Stay" comes on Jack FM when we're driving back from Seattle or Olympia we could crank the stereo and sing along at the top of our lungs. Then we look into each other's eyes and fall deeply in love.

Your friend,

Today: nothing
Tomorrow: 60 minute power walk

Friday, March 10, 2006

If you can't find 'em, grind 'em

I ran through Tacoma's Point Defiance Park today. It has an exactly 5-mile loop, and it looks the forest moon of Endor from Return of the Jedi. (It's so rad.)

Here's the thing about running a new route: you can drive it all you want, but until your feet actually hit the pavement, you don't really understand how hilly it really is. This happened today. Right off the bat I was forced to run a fairly steep hill. Afterwards, my legs tightened up and I didn't think I was going to make it. I stopped and stretched and kept going.

I stopped after each 5-mile loop at my car and drink a little water and ate a GU packet. (By the way, I gave the 'bu back on Wednesday and am rockin' the Civic again.)

The run followed my typical progression:
first 5 miles = shit
next 5 miles = remarkably awesome
last 5 miles or so = not as bad as first 5, but certainly not as good as the middle 5

Anyway, I'm home free on the long runs for a couple of weeks now, which is good because I'm going to be in Minnesota next weekend for Neil's bachelor party and to see my family. I didn't want to depend on running there, and then have the weather be 90 below zero, or 2 feet of snow.

Today: 16 mile run
Tomorrow: leisurely walk, perhaps?

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Trying to sleep it off

I haven't been feeling well since Monday. Just kind of headache-y and fatigued and warmer than usual. I've been trying to sleep a lot and drink a bunch of water. I skipped my workout Monday night, but I did manage to power walk last night. I will do the same tonight.

I will try to run 16 miles on Friday morning; that's why I'm a little freaky about my health right now. I wanna run Friday. I'm going to be back in the M-N next weekend, and I won't have time to run it otherwise.

The big alt-rock station in Seattle is playing the hell out of Damone, Matisyahu and HIM. Anyone hear these bands? Damone sound just like Veruca Salt, but less interesting. Matisyahu is apparently an Orthodox Jew who's really into Reggae. (Wha?) Yeah, I don't get it either. It just sounds like wanker, frat-boy music to me. And HIM sounds very ...80s(?), like a bad Cult cover band or something, but less cool and weirdly dark. The song is called Rip Out the Wings of a Butterfly. Yep.

Today: 60 minute powerwalk
Tomorrow: 60 minute powerwalk

Monday, March 06, 2006

Goodbye, Kirby

It's hard to overstate Kirby Puckett's impact on any baseball-loving man born in Minnesota and many parts of the Upper Midwest between 1978 and 1983, but here goes: Puckett was Christ-like to this group.

He was as cool as Darkwing Duck, a neverending pizza party and a cute girl who'd hold your hand at recess all wrapped up in one.
He had a really weird staccato speech pattern, cool facial hair and always seemed to be having fun.
He was so cool that McDonalds sold something called the "Puck Pack" for a sort while that included, and my details might be a little blurred, a quadruple cheese burger, two pounds of fries, a 5-gallon pail of Coke and a fudge sundae.
He was so cool that some four years after his early retirement because of glaucoma, he made 19,000 Timberwolves fans at the Target Center lose their minds cheering just by taking off his hat and waving to the crowd.
He was short, kind of chubby and had little legs, so he stuck out among other baseball players. But what he lacked in speed he made up for in effort and sheer determination.
He single-handedly won the World Series for the Twins in 1991 (arguably the greatest series ever; sorry Red Sox fans) by hitting a dinger and stealing a homerun that was sailing into the Dome's outfield, but he never seemed to gloat about it.
He fulfilled all Minnesotans' untold fantasy by being in outsider (he grew up in Chicago) who went to Minnesota and never left.

Every game he'd stand in the batter's box clutching a piece of wood that looked gigantic at the top and was like a toothpick at the bottom and take his cuts. He'd get his undersized legs moving around the bases if he got a hit, or if he was chasing a ball in centerfield. You couldn't take your eyes off him, and you couldn't control yourself or cheer loud enough when Bob Casey announced his name over the Metrodome's PA: "Kirrrbbyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy Puckett!!!!"

Kirby was my hero because he was a good player, and, more importantly, because I knew he'd never leave my team. And that used to count for something. Teams and loyalty. He understood that. He didn't chase more money, even though I'm sure he could've. He didn't demand to be traded. He didn't try to negotiate his contract by using the press. Kirby just played ball.

Rest in peace, number 34.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Sunday morning, etc.

Check out these trees outside my house. I'm not sure what kind they are -- cherry blossoms? -- but they bloomed in the past week, and have really brightened up the neighborhood. As has that little yellow pickup truck, which I don't think has moved in a week. It's so awesome. (Big ups to Cassie for the photo.)

-I've heard Kiss' "Roll and Roll All Night" three times, in its entirety, in the past four days. Weird.

-The latest issue of the New Yorker has a snarky little piece on the Olympics that included this part, which got me laughing:

All of these questions and more could be contemplated during the tackily retro opening pageant: atheletes marched in to the accompaniment of such well-known Italian standards as "Hot Stuff," "I Will Survive," and Y.M.C.A." The theme of the Winter Olympics was "Passion lives here," a rather flat and unconvincing declaration -- perhaps the International Olympic Committee should have chosen "Disco lives here" instead. In every multi-million dolloar extravaganza, there are elements that fall under the category of It Seemed Like a Good Idea When We Started Planning, and for some viewers one of these was seeing Yoko Ono -- whose name is pretty much the first thing that comes to mind when you think about sports -- take the stage, in winter white and sunglasses, and deliver a message about world peace; Ono's own recent efforts in the service of better human relations include denigrating Paul McCartney's songwriting talent at an awards dinner last fall.


Today: off
Tomorrow: 60 minutes of cross training of some sort

Saturday, March 04, 2006

I have chosen to stay and fight.

So, 14 miles through the beautiful environs of Olympia, huh?

Yep, and I made it. The first half was pretty unenjoyable. My legs were stiff and sore from a long walk yesterday, which included climbing a large hill. I ate a "Tri Berry" Gu packet and stretched out a bit at the second water stop somewhere near the 6-7 mile mark. Afterwards, I felt much better. I ate another with about 2-3 miles to go. The Gu helped but not really in the way I thought it would. It didn't make me run faster or anything like that. I think it helps keep you from completely depleting your body's energy because I feel less spent today than after the "Gu-less" 12-miler of a few weeks back.

I'm going to tackle the 16-miler this Friday, a week before schedule. I'm doing this because I'll be traveling the following weekend and will miss the training group run.

Today: ran 14 miles
Tomorrow: off

Friday, March 03, 2006

This is not a joke.

I got two MySpace messages yesterday that reminded me how much of a stretch this whole marathon thing is.

One, from a friend who I've known for about 10 years said something like, "Wow, a marathon ... that's ambitious." It had that certain tinge of "Yeah, whatever, Paul. Good luck with that."

The second message was one of outright disbelief. This friend, who I worked with in college, asked if the blog was a joke, but then followed it up with some advice since she's run a marathon before. If this were a joke, I would have shown *incredible* dedication to my comedic craft by now.

I took no offense to either of the messages. However, I was quickly reminded about how difficult the training actually is, and how difficult it's *perceived* to be.

Today: outdoor walk (!)
Tomorrow: 14-mile run

Thursday, March 02, 2006

I'm sorry. Am I boring you?

I haven't written about training lately, but it doesn't mean I
haven't been thinking about it. I power walked tonight, and began to
mentally prepare for a full day of eating and rest tomorrow, followed
by a 14-mile run on Saturday morning.

I spend as much time shopping for food/cooking/eating as I do running.
It's a dirty little secret about marathon training. I am hungry
*constantly*. My metabolism has sped up considerably in just the past
two to three weeks. I've been eating a ton of eggs, spinach and
Honeynut Cheerios, but not necessarily together or in that order. Oddly, I've almost
completely stopped eating cheese, which was the main staple of my diet
for the past six months or so. But my banana intake has increased
1,000 percent. I eat three a day now. Three!

In preparation for Saturday's long run, I bought some GU, which is a
flavored, concentrated dose of unfettered carbohydrates. According to
its web site: "GU Energy Gel contains maltodextrin, the best complex
carbohydrate for delivering energy to working muscles. GU also
contains the optimal balance of carbohydrates for the body during
exercise: 80% complex/20% simple. It is this balance of maltodextrin
and fructose in GU that delivers a quick rise in blood sugar and
maintains that glucose level for up to 45 minutes during exercise."

Umm, okay. Got all that? All I know is that it's supposed to keep you
moving in the middle of a run. It comes in little packets that you eat
15 minutes before running. It's pretty thick, and the orange flavor is
not recommended. However, the "vanilla bean" variety is excellent. And
"tri berry" should not be missed.

Today: 60-minute power walk
Tomorrow: walk outside?

"Spin" magazine? More like "I'm never, ever going to read that piece of crap ever again" magazine*


Wednesday, Mar 01
Killing Yourself to Leave Spin: 100% of a True Story
This one even we saw coming. On the heels of Spin's rather unspectacular sale to Hartle Media, and yesterday's shuffling of the editorial decks, famed essayist and Spin writer Chuck Klosterman has decided to pack it up. Our source confirms a tip we recieved earlier in the day that the author of Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs and Killing Yourself to Live: 85% of a True Story was cleaning out his desk today.

There is now officially no good reason to ever read Spin ever again. Even if the little subscription card screams 9,376 months for only $11, don't do it. It's not worth it. It's become the Star of music magazines: all fun facts, weird out of context quotes from Dave Grohl and "Celebrities: they're just like us"-style features with Gwen Stefani.

Today: 60-minute power walk

*Unless, of course, there's something in there about the Smashing Pumpkins reunion or Kim Deal/The Breeders.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

My friend Dan is hilarious.

From his page:

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Prairie Run Project
Current mood: determined
Category: Goals, Plans, Hopes

On Wednesday, March 1, I will attempt to run for 30 minutes. This is a blog of my preparations to do so, and also a parody of Paul's blog.

I just returned from Rudolph's Shoe Mart, where I purchased a $50 pair of New Balance running shoes. Salesman David J. Knutson insisted they were good shoes, and I took his word. I'm trying to recall whether David J. had a 'stache or just seemed like a mustache kind of guy.

After I tried on the shoes, a young woman who also worked there asked me if I needed help. David J., who was helping another nearby customer, circled back and glared her down: "Nuhuh. I got him. He's been helped." Must be commission.

Next, I bought a running costume at Target, along with an impulse-buy Johnny Cash CD. I bought some pants that seem like something runners would wear, along with a shirt made of some kind of space-age polymer product that disintegrates sweat on contact and makes you a better basketball player.

Then I stopped at the grocery store. I bought bread, vitamins, orange juice and Cocoa-Roos (generic Cocoa Puffs) cereal. A good breakfast and I think I'm going to be all ready to go running.

Why are you doing this to yourself?
It happens about once a year -- I buy new running shoes when it gets nice out and jog every other day for about a week and a half, then quit.

When and where will you attempt to run the 30 minutes?
Probably mid-evening, down to Falls Park and back in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Wait, didn't you raise laziness to a whole new level when you lived in Minneapolis?
No, you're thinking of Paul.

Won't your nipples bleed and your toenails fall off?
It's possible. According to Paul's blog, you're supposed to grease yourself with petroleum jelly to cut down on any friction.

Currently listening:
The Legend of Johnny Cash
By Johnny Cash
Release date: By 25 October, 2005


Today: 60-minute treadmill run
Now playing: The Shins