What’s your favorite post long run breakfast taco joint in Austin?

June 15, 2009

Yes, that’s it what’s the best breakfast taco joint in Austin for after a run. There’s a little poll on the sidebar of the blog and feel free to comment on this post as well with your reasons in case you’d like to share. With so many long runs over the horizon we should try more places out so is a search for the best taco for the occasion.


Running while you’re travelling

June 15, 2009

It can be challenging to keep up with running and training when you have to travel for work or on vacation. For a vacation, this is my opinion and philosophy unless you’re going on a running vacation, don’t fret over your macro and enjoy the time off. Run because you feel like it and just take it easy. How else could I have the mental state to take a goofy picture like this:

Running in front of the Ponte Vecchio in Florence

Running in front of the Ponte Vecchio in Florence

When I was working in marketing I ended up traveling quite a bit for a year, and still get a little travel in for work. For the most part I’ve managed to keep running on those trips. On a vacation you can be much looser about planning, just mapping out a route to see some sights with tourist maps but with work and tighter schedules a little planning can go a long way.

A few things I’ve found very useful:

  1. Plan for the clothes you need and take an extra set for different weather just in case.
  2. Pack some plastic bags … yes your clothes don’t just dry out. If you have some time then you can dry things in the bathroom but sometimes you have to run, checkout and fly out the same day.
  3. Take the energy bars and other foods/electrolytes you need to keep your energy up. Food at work events or offices away from home isn’t general thinking of the marathon runner that is coming into town. This is especially important if you’re going to a tradeshow or something of that nature.
  4. Map out some routes, you can use gmap-pedometer, and write out some turn by turn instructions. You can also find some route recommendations from others by searching on-line.
  5. Don’t go crazy with the food. It’s so tempting to eat more and over indulge when you’re on a work trip. Everybody else is doing it. One splurge isn’t bad but if you eat too often in a manner you don’t at home you’ll feel it when you’re trying to sleep, your runs will feel harder and even when you get home it’ll take a little more time to readjust.

That’s it from me, hopefully others that have to train while traveling will share their ideas.

Training run nutrition prep

June 14, 2009

Here’s a picture of my Gu and Thermolyte prepared stash. The Gu should last a little over two weeks and the bottle of thermolytes (packed in baggies of two pills per serving, thanks for the tip Mike) should be enough for over a month.

It’s pretty east to calculate what I need from now to the race so I add it all up and ask the folks at Rogue Equipment to add that to their store order for me. I may need to order some more stuff through them since this is part of what I got for Boston buy bailed mid training program.

Planning your hydration and nutrition

June 14, 2009

After my long run on Saturday I was talking with a friend about hydration and nutrition on long runs and during races. I’m not an expert on nutrition or hydration, for what you need based on your specific body type, sweat rate, goals etc nothing beats seeing a nutritionist. This is more on the part of things you can control yourself before, during and after a run or race. The most important thing is in my opinion is to plan it out and rely on yourself. With a group like Rogue we’re fortunate that we have water out on the course on long runs, track workouts etc. On the longer and warmer days there’s also Gatorade mixed in. In the end on these runs you don’t know going into it what will be out there. Even on races, you don’t know if the Gatorade or energy drink will be mixed well, diluted, super strong or just plain old nasty tasting. After training for 6 months for a marathon it’s a shame to leave all of that to chance.

Again on this I need to thank a few people from Team Rogue for teaching me something about this during our training for CIM. I always took GU on long runs and for CIM planned to just do that and made do with the water and cytomax at the race. I stole a page from the rest of the guys plans and started taking thermolytes (for electrolytes) and GUs on all my runs … as long as I got water on a run I had everything I needed for a run or race. It was kind of nice, didn’t have to worry about anything but getting water on the race. Also on training runs knowing I have everything I need, and don’t have to think about … “where is the Gatorade”, or don’t get tiered from not being able to absorb water without enough electrolytes.

  • Advice #1: Figure out what you need on a run and race and try and get at much of it yourself, not relying solely on others to provide it who you don’t really know.
  • Advice #2: Recovery drink. You HAVE to have it on any medium to long run. Within 30 minutes of ending your run. You will recover better, and have energy during the day.
  • Advice #3: Hydrate all week long. That doesn’t mean you have to load up on sugar on Gatorade. It means getting the salts and water you need. Most days at work I’ll have one big glass of water with a Nuun tab.

On the brutal run on Saturday all three of these came in very handy. I couldn’t have survived without all the termolyte pills, half way into the run I could feel salt caking on my face and knew I was loosing more salt than I usually do so decided to make use of my extra 2 thermolyte pills on the run. When we finished I was completely wiped out and didn’t think I could have made it 10 more minutes without falling asleep. Luckily my recovery drink (Cranberry Blend Juice with Whey Protien) was on hand and once I had that in my system was able to relax and finish out with a long stretching routine.

Humility and learning to survive on a long run

June 13, 2009

Today’s 22 mile long run was not easy by any means, it was slow but not easy. Last week after our long run Steve was ragging on us for using the word slow run, reminding us that in our base building we’re all running easy not slow. Well today, there was no easy no matter what pace I tried to run … so it was just plain old slow. I’ll go into a little more on the run but before I do I have to thank Mus, Damon, Ramon, Andrew and Ken for keeping me alive on today’s run. If they weren’t running in front of me today I would have walked a lot of the run today.

We started at 5:30 and I forgot my electrolyte pills and sun glasses at the Rogue Annex so I ran back right as we started to grab both. The guys were a little under a quarter mile ahead of me and I never really caught up for a while. After a mile it was obvious to me today would be a tough run, I was drenched with sweat and knew I’d need to hydrate well and would make use of the extra thermolyte pills I packed in case it was hot. Just when I’d have the guys in sight I’d see a water fountain and take a quick drink. Between Rogue and the the Mopac Foot Bridge I stopped twice for water, when we got to the water at the Mopac Foot Bridge I finally caught up with the guys since they stopped for water. That was the first of 2 thermolyte pills from a set of 4. I figured I should just take them now and plan on 2 every 40 or so minutes so I would absorb any water I took in well. The run was a pretty standard up Lake Austin Blvd, then Scenic, Mount Bonnel, Balcones to Hancock … on the way back taking Pecos. I could never really keep up with the guys, I tended to fall of the back on each section after the water stop, catch up at the water stop and then off we’d go again. I’d set my mind on just running today based on effort, not closing or pushing and was glad I did otherwise it would have been a disappointing run. I’m not sure I could have pushed even if I wanted to … and if the price I’d pay the rest of the weekend or week would be worth it.

The temperature wasn’t to bad, under 80 degrees but the humidity was rough. This is for me the first true summer weather run and it’ll take a few of these to get acclimatized so in 2 weeks I hope a run like today’s isn’t as … well death marchish mentally. It was good run to realize that there is only so much you can control and just chugging along with what you can do on any given do is all you can ask.

Thanks again for the run folks.

Current Wins: First 22 mile run of the season, work trip to Berkeley

Current Losses: Humdity, little to no cooking

Switching to the Oakley Half Jacket XLJ Polarized Sunglasses from my Natives – Product Review

June 1, 2009

It’s been 5 years since bought my last pair of running sun glasses. When I bought those glasses, training for Chicago in 2004 I never thought I’d be running as regularly as I am today so the glasses were a splurge. Since then till this weekend I’ve worn the Native Dash SS. This weekend I bought my second pair of running glasses at Rogue, I thought after 5 more years of running this active lifestyle thing may be here to stay. The new pair is the Oakley Polarized Half Jacket XLJ.

I had a chance to use the Oakley’s at the Loop 30k trail race this weekend I liked them. The polarized lenses on the Oakley’s seem to work much better than the ones that came with my Natives. Now my natives are the gunmetal glasses with the Grey polarized lenses and the Oakley’s are the Titanium Polarized Iridium so they are different so the way colors show up varies.

When I bought my original Natives they were a great deal. They came with 4 lenses, the gray polarized, then an orange, yellow and clear set that aren’t polarized. Those have come in handy on slightly overcast days (yellow) and in the dark in cold running days in Europe (clear) to keep the frigid air out of the eyes. The Natives now only come with two pair of lenses. They are still a lower price than the Oakley’s, $110 vs $160. The Oakley’s by default only come with 1 pair of lenses, you can buy the “array” which gives 4 lenses but that’s $310 … you can get just lenses though for $60 or so.

Native Dash SS

Native Dash SS

Oakely Half Jacket XLJ

Oakley Half Jacket XLJ

Both of the glasses seem to have good ventilation to reduce fogging. You’ll can see the three holes on top of the frames of the Natives that found worked well. Both are made for small to medium facial profiles. I think the Native’s fit better on my face, they tend to “hold” better and not bounce at all. With the Oakley’s this weekend there were a couple of times I noticed the glasses loose contact with my nose just a little and then come back down so that is a negative for them. The clarity with the Oakley’s however was amazing, in general I’m now a believer in Polarized lenses. The Oakley’s are my third pair of polarized glasses (Natives for Running, Ray-Bans for driving, Oakley’s for running) and the crispness, clarity and lack of glare are worth the extra money.

Update 7/7/09: The Oakley’s came with two different sizes for the rubber around the nose. Changing those has made whatever bouncing there was go away.

So … should you buy the Natives or the Oakley’s. I think you’re fine either way. I’d go based on the fit, cost and how much you value the different in lenses. The other thing to keep in mind is that both of these come in different color frames which have different “default” lenses. Each of those lenses is more or less appropriate for different conditions (very sunny, overcast, etc) so based on where you live and what time of day your normally run the lens makes a difference.

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