Getting a new pair of shoes – the Adidas Supernova Glide and Mizuno Wave Alchemy

adidas-supernova-glide

I have had the greatest difficulty in finding a pair of shoes that fit and feel right. I think I can remember back to a time in grade school, bugging my Mom to buy me a pair of shoes that I so badly wanted, only to rarely wear them because they just didn’t feel right. All in all, I probably have accumulated a closet’s worth of shoes during my lifetime that just didn’t get much usage because they didn’t work for me.

Thus, for me, trying on a pair of shoes at the store and walking around for few minutes just doesn’t cut it. I won’t feel comfortable until the shoes have been “battle-tested” for hours… unfortunately this sort of intense “try before you buy” approach doesn’t work for most types of footwear, because it’s not fair to the store especially if you’ve worn the shoes outside.

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How I bought a car to complete my first marathon

2008 PEC Marathon Medal

The following is a somewhat long-winded first hand account of my first marathon, which I completed earlier this year, but took some time to write about.

It was a usual Friday afternoon, the time of the week that I usually can’t wait for. However, this Friday I was feeling a little bloated and slow having come back from a lunch buffet where I’d overindulged.

To work off this lethargic feeling, I decided to visit the gym after work – something that I only do infrequently on Fridays, being keen on getting home as early as possible in anticipation of the weekend. I’m fortunate enough to have a workplace that has a gym onsite – but this also means any excuses I’d have for not going would only be made weaker.

Dragging myself to the gym, I started into my routine. In between reps and trying to catch my breath, I starting making some small talk with Brian, one of my coworkers, who was on the bench beside me.

“I don’t normally see you in here this time of day,” I said.

“I usually come in at lunch,” he responded. “But a lunch meeting ran overtime today.”

“Are you working out to prepare for hockey?” I asked, referring to the recreational league that was starting in September.

“No,” he replied, slowly. “I’m in here crossing-training for the marathon.”

That last word, marathon, set off a trigger in my mind.

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The effect of heat on exercise

Heat: Everyone knows that when there’s too much of it, things can get very uncomfortable, especially if there’s an accompanying high humidity. However, a high temperature is also something that needs to be considered if you are training under these conditions. Besides the general notions to drink plenty of fluids and stay hydrated, excessive temperatures can also adversely affect your performance, so any benchmarks or goals you set for yourself need to be adjusted depending on the conditions.

Take, for example, the route that I have been running for the past several weeks. During that time, I’ve kept records of my run times along with the conditions that day. (Specifically, the temperature, dew point and relative humidity)

On days where the temperature was above 25C my run times were averaging between 45-46 minutes. On days where the temperature was 20C or lower, average times decreased to around 43 minutes. That’s roughly a 4-6% decrease in time when going from 25C to 20C, or conversely, a 4-7% increase in times when going from 20C or below to 25C or higher.

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Announcing RunTrackr: Create and track running route distances easily!

I’ve just launched RunTrackr. It’s a site where you can create a running route in order to track, among other things, distances. It’s designed to be a tool to aid anyone who runs/jogs a lot, either recreationally or for training. A training log is also provided so that you can easily keep track of your running records and record your progress during training or just to watch your personal improvement.

Here’s a quick overview of what’s possible with RunTrackr as well as what we have in store for the future in terms of improvements to the site.

Adding/Creating a route

Creating a route probably the main reason you’d want to use RunTrackr. By creating a running route, you can measure its distance and keep track of it in your training log every time you run it.

RunTrackr Preview

Plotting a route is very easy; all you need to do is enter your location (Eg. “Belleville, ON”) and then click to add points. Existing points can be dragged around to alter the route. When you’re done, just click “Save Route” to finalize! You can also choose to enter a short description, tag your route with descriptive labels or rate your route’s difficulty.

Later on, I plan to add support for uploading automatically-generated routes/plots from GPS devices like those from Garmin, et al. This will make adding routes even easier for those who have access to such devices.

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