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Software development, running, music & beer

Monthly Archives: January 2011

Cleveland Marathon: January training update

This month I began my training routine for the Cleveland Marathon, which is on May 15th, 2011. It will be my ninth marathon and my first since last May’s Pittsburgh Marathon. My running seems to have plateaued a few years back (my marathon PR was Akron in 2007), so I continue to try new things to finally get over that hump, if it’s even possible at this point. In addition to running, I have started to mix in some spinning and yoga. I am also changing up my training plan and going with one of the Coach Jenny plans on the Cleveland Marathon website. The big change is to run based on effort (mainly with the help of a heart rate monitor), which has led to me running a lot slower so far than I usually do on my easy and long runs. Also, other than the long run, the other runs are based on time and not distance, which is a change from what I’m used to.

At the beginning of the month, I purchased a new electronic training partner, a Garmin FR60. It is not a GPS device, since I do a lot of indoor running, but rather it is a foot pod that tracks distance, a heart rate monitor, and the watch to capture & display all of the data. After going through a number of Nike+ iPod kits over the past few years, I wanted to try something else, and something that included a HR monitor. I am pretty happy with it so far. It’s simple to wirelessly transfer my run data from my watch to my computer and automatically upload it. And I can manually add in runs to Garmin’s website for when I forget my watch (which has already happened once). The Garmin site with all the data is a lot better than the Nike+ website.

So for January, I logged a disappointing 80.62 miles. I say disappointing because I did not keep up with all of the scheduled runs on my plan, including one week (when I was off attending a software developers conference) when I ran just once. My longest run was 10 miles, which I just did yesterday. No problems with anything so far, besides getting in all of my runs and trying to be consistent with my cross training (spinning & yoga). It’s just been a little tough to stick with my slower pace. But hopefully I will start seeing some improvements, and I am looking forward to getting into some tempo runs which start in a couple weeks.

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The Last Living Rose

Last night I checked out the new local high-end burger bar, Flip Side, in downtown Hudson, OH. It was pretty good, with a good craft beer draft selection. Look for a full review soon on Cleveland Hops. (UPDATE: 1/24 – My review has been posted.)

Tonight I am off for a big company winter party at some fancy hotel out on the east side. I have to get all dressed up, which I’m not a fan of. But there is lots of great food, fake gambling (for raffle tixs), and two free drinks. Woohoo! Hopefully they have a better beer selection than my wife’s company’s holiday party that had Bud Light & Heineken. Otherwise, I hope they can serve me up a White Russian. I’m not big on booze, but can’t go wrong with The Dude’s drink of choice.

So the title of this post comes from a new PJ Harvey song, from an album that comes out in a few days. I have been a big fan of hers for a long time. The video is directed by Seamus Murphy and features mostly photographs he took while travelling. Word is he is doing a video for each of the album’s 12 songs. The second video, for a song called ‘The Words That Maketh Murder’, is available already also, and is quite good as well.

PJ Harvey – The Last Living Rose from Radioalterno on Vimeo.

Hilarious

Last year, I stumbled across a great new TV show on FX (home of many great shows, I’m discovering), called ‘Louie‘ which is a semi-autobiographical show from comedian Louis CK. It took me a bit to get into his style, but I got hooked and zoomed through all the episodes quickly thereafter. Looking forward to the next season.

Last night, I watched the recently released stand-up DVD from Louis CK, called ‘Hilarious’. I got it from Netflix, and it sat on top of my TV for two weeks (which is actually much shorter than most DVDs sit in my house before being watched), only to find out today that it’s available in it’s entirety on YouTube, uncensored, and broken up into 6 parts. Here is a link to Part One (skip to 1:30 to avoid the opening credits). Not for the easily offended.

A Fresh Start

After a long layoff from blogging, I have decided to give it a try again. My first step was to move it over from Blogger to WordPress which will hopefully allow me to get a little more creative, if I choose to do so.

I have recently started blogging again over at Cleveland Hops, which is run by my friend Kyle, about my love of craft beer and my first attempts at homebrewing. But that site is obviously limited in it’s scope, so I am opening this back up to hopefully blog about some of my other interests including running, software development and music.

In regards to running, I have kind of plateaued over the past few years and am trying to finally break through and keep improving, if that’s even possible at this point. I am registered for the Cleveland Marathon and am hoping to break my now 3+ year old marathon PR. I have added spinning and yoga to my training repertoire, and am trying a new training plan to change things up quite a bit. So we’ll have to see what happens in May.

As for software development, I am kind of stuck in a rut at work doing the same things I have been doing for 5 years, and using some now dated technologies. But I have been trying to regularly attend some local user groups and try to reignite my interests in coding. I just attended the CodeMash developers conference last week and saw a lot of great presentations and talks, and it was exciting to see so many people passionate about programming.

Music has been an interest of mine for a long time, and I’m always up for sharing my latest finds with others, and learning what others are listening to. My constant search for the next great thing has kind of slowed over the past few years, but I still love finding a new act or catchy song. So look for regular posts on what I am listening to lately.