Tuesday, August 31, 2010


It has now been three weeks since my last run (which sounds eerily like a Catholic confessional session. Six Hail Marys and the Rosary, coming up). I've had trouble getting into full-blown cross-training mode. Taking a page out of Dumprunner Matt's book, I planned on taking it easy the first two weeks anyway. I managed to get in one lap swim (800 yds), three bike rides (45.5 miles total) and few stretching sessions. I also got back into a strength training routine, which brings me to…

This morning when I walked into our kitchen, wearing a short and relatively tight short-sleeve shirt, my youngest daughter looked at my arms and said, "wow, Dad, you look buff!" (if only every day started the same way). I'm not sure about being "buff", but I have noticed a bit more muscle showing up, thanks to a little circuit training routine I've been doing. I have a set of eight exercises - some utilizing weights, some using just my body weight - that I run through non-stop for 20 minutes. I start by warming up on my Schwinn Airdyne for 2 miles (usually 7-8 minutes), then I run through the exercises, one after another, until my 20 minutes is up. By the end, my muscles are spent and I'm gasping for air. My intent is to make it as much a cardio workout as a strength workout. I use the same weight every week so I can compare my results, in terms of how many total reps I can complete. While I also do some miscellaneous strength work a few times a week, I only do this workout once a week. I alternate pulling exercises with pushing exercises. Today was my fourth week. In my first week, I managed 192 total reps, 200 reps in week 2, 236 reps in week 3, and 251 reps today. I'm thrilled with the progress, and with regaining some of the strength I sacrificed while running a lot of miles earlier this year. I've never been good at maintaining a strength training routine while running. And finally...

At the risk of tooting my own horn (it was the dog, not me), I wanted to mention that I'm excited about a new opportunity I've been given. I'll be the new High School Cross-Country correspondent for Northwest Runner Magazine, at least for part of the state. I just finished writing my first article (XC season preview) and will be taking some photos this afternoon to accompany the article. It will appear in the October issue of the magazine. I enjoy writing and, although I'll have to behave myself and stick with a pretty dry and straightforward writing style, it might lead to other opportunities. Even if it doesn't, it'll be a fun experience. I enjoyed the heck out of track and XC when I ran in high school, so it'll be cool to be a part of that atmosphere again, even as an outsider. Wish me luck!


  1. That - intensity sounds great! I need some.

    The Other - good luck!

  2. Colin - Good for you! You're smart to dutifully record and track your ongoing cross-training effort ("What gets measured gets done...") Congrats also for the XC writing gig; that'll be fun!

  3. All I got from my son the other day after a long run was: "you look old today". Very exciting to write for a magazine, good luck!

  4. I tried lifting weights, they were too heavy. Oh man, I slay ME.

  5. PLEASE tell me that you struck a pose and totally embarrassed your daughter when she said you were buff?

    Is your article online?