Tags: boston marathon, Exercise, news, running, tragedy
I had initially planned on updating my followers about how my training for my first half marathon was going and include a map of the distance covered.
Then I got a text alert about the Boston Marathon and everything changed.
Senselessness in that something like this could happen at all.
Cowardice on behalf of whomever perpetrated this act of terrorism (as it’s being classified at the moment) in proving their point, either political, religious or otherwise.
Heroism in those first responders and volunteers who rushed toward the scenes of the bombings immediately in order to help the victims, even it may have been too late. (Fatalities currently listed as three which includes an 8-year-old boy. Heartbreaking.)
While the questions of “Why?” and “How?” may never be answered, there’s one thing that is certain: this will not keep the community of runners down.
We are strong. We face look challenges straight in the face and do our best to conquer them. In time we do and when that challenge becomes the norm, we turn things up a notch and tackle yet another. This is how we live.
We are tough. Anyone who has every pounded pavement for the sheer enjoyment of simply doing it doesn’t have something wrong with them as non-runners may think. It’s just the opposite: we do it because we can.
We are fearless. Danger is all around and we risk bodily harm on our daily outings. It could be something as simple as tripping over uneven pavement or a misstep when we realize how human we really are. But in the end, we dust ourselves off and when our bodies allow, get back to what we love.
We will return. Never tell a runner they can’t. That is word is just not in our dictionary. Not only will we return, we will be stronger, faster, and better than we were before.
So to whomever is responsible for this act, know this: you have not won. You are now and will always be the minority. The good in this world far outweighs the evil and your decision make your point was all in vain.
Yes, there are victims and fatalities.
But the human spirit endures and cannot be broken.
In closing, I have one request. Whatever you believe, whatever brings you solace in a time of tragedy, I ask that you do it to honor all of those affected by what happened in Boston today. A simple moment of silence, reflection, etc. will go a long way in the healing process.
My heart and thoughts go out to all. And as has been trending on Twitter today, remember to…
Tags: 10k, 5k, california, Exercise, hollywood, running, weight loss, weight loss blog
On Saturday, April 6, I took part in the second annual Hollywood Half Marathon event and no, I didn’t do the half marathon. But I’ll get into that a bit later.
In last year’s inaugural event, I ran in the 5k and set my current PR of 31:51. It’s not hard to do when you consider that most of the first half is going downhill. And I figured since I already ran 5k, I’ll make this year the year in which I make it my first 10k.
At any rate, Hollywood was indeed my second 10k of the year and it was much more memorable than last year’s event. For one, there were water stations in abundance along the route. This was a huge upgrade from last year’s event in which large bottles of water were randomly placed on the roadside. Also, the start time was bumped to 6 am and the finish line was moved down the street. All that aside, I still rode the train to the event to avoid 1) driving and 2) paying for parking.
And the results:
- Gun: 1:25:54.9
- Chip: 1:10:48.1
- Pace: 11:25
It’s definitely slower than the Coaster Run:
- Gun – 1:15:14.5
- Chip – 1:05:48.5
- Pace – 10:37
However, it seems there’s a little discrepancy. For the Coaster Run, I logged 6.16 miles on Sports Tracker but for Hollywood, I logged 6.33 miles.
So if you take those two things into consideration, one could say that since I ran .17 miles longer and since it took only 5 minutes longer to finish, my time at Hollywood of 1:10:48.1 is a new 10k PR. And I’m totally fine with that!
A few of the highlights:
- Passing a runner dressed as Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz who was carrying a basket with a stuffed Toto inside
- Being passed by three runners in Marilyn Monroe dresses
- Being cheered on by every LAPD officer working the event
- Strolling Hollywood Boulevard and the Chinese Theater before either got crowded with tourists
- The horrible cramp I got while walking back to the train station
- The poor woman in front of me who stopped to take a picture of the Mile 5 sign – and twisted her ankle in the process
- Seeing runners stray off-course to stop at McDonald’s or Starbucks
Yes, there are pictures. Allow me to show them to you.
As for that thing I’ll get into later, well, here it is.
- 2012: Hollywood 5k
- 2013: Hollywood 10k
- 2014: Hollywood Half
Yes indeed, folks, I’ve made my decision. In 2014, the year I turn 45, I will be running 13.1 miles through Hollywood and beyond and the training has already begun. The plan is to get down to a weight of around 190 and build up my stamina so that I’ll be able to run most if not all of it without much difficulty. In case you couldn’t tell in some of the pictures, I’ve gained a little back – I’m at about 220 now and I need to get myself back into a solid program of eating right and exercising regularly. I have a year to do it. I will get there.
And as of now, this is my last event for a while. In fact, it might be the last one until October rolls around since the Long Beach Marathon Bike Tour and 5k are the only ones I have registered for. We’ll see; there are few more that I want to tackle but you know, these events are not free and I’ve got a family to look after.
Well, that’s all I have for now. We’ll see how my latest weight loss plan progresses!
Tags: weight loss, weight loss blog, buena park, Exercise, Motivation, california, running, coaster run
Years ago, Uncle Lou gave Anthony some pointers on how to swim and tread water.
When he saw that Anthony was having trouble with it, he dropped this piece of advice on him:
“A man can do whatever he wants.”
Naturally, he meant “whatever he wants” in terms of whatever he sets his mind to do. And while this was my first 10k, his words resonated during the entire run and helped me pull through.
The sold-out race started around 7:30 am with waves of runners leaving every minute and with me being in the 7th wave, it took some time to cross the starting line. But once I got going, I never looked back and the first half breezed by fairly quickly.
I continued and at about Mile 4, I slowed a bit to take some sips of water from the bottles on my hydration belt. I would only take a few two more breaks, one for each remaining mile. By the time I turned the corner and saw the Mile 6 sign, I was pumped.
I crossed the finish line with as much steam as I had in me and, once crossed, was handed my medal and immediately started to sob. It was pretty emotional not only for it being my first 10k but also for the fact that I dedicated the run and medal to Uncle Lou. It seems his words my guidance as I continued to run at a pace that was no doubt one of my best to date even if I dropped a few seconds from miles 4 through 6. The official results:
- Gun – 1:15:14.5
- Chip – 1:05:48.5
- Pace – 10:37
All in all it was fantastic run to be a part of and I look forward to 2014′s event. But the one thing I won’t look forward to is this: bandits.
For those who don’t know, a bandit is someone — not considered a true runner by other runners — who sneaks into an event without paying but reaps the benefits by getting a medal. Keep in mind that running events take a lot of time to put together and benefit a variety of organizations. A bandit is a low-life who not only cheats a paying runner out of their medal but also the beneficiary out of their money. It’s a lose-lose for all involved. Just imagine if your kid finished their first 5k and, thanks to a handful of bandits, all of the medals were gone.
In other words, a thief. Not cool.
But it seems that there were a lot of them at this popular event and one of them even bragged about it on her Instagram feed.
This was posted on the Coaster Run’s Facebook page. Looks like user celisshy isn’t all that shy if she is brash enough to bandit this run then go about bragging about it on Instagram — and tag it #coasterrun. Many runners began to criticize her and, curiously, her feed was soon made private. I hope she felt the guilt of it all, especially knowing she cheated kids out of their medals. The good thing is that the organizers have promised to give medals to those who didn’t get them as soon as they have more made.
Anyhow, I did take some pictures and they can be seen below in what is my first WordPress album ever! Note that these are a combination of photos from my phone, Ann’s phone and Anthony’s Samsung Tab.
And as for Uncle Lou’s words, yes, he was absolutely right. A man can do whatever he wants
Tags: running, weight loss, weight loss blog
On Friday, I got word that my Uncle Lou had passed away. It wasn’t too surprising considering his health problems as of late but still shocking to know he’s gone.
He was the man who taught me and all of my cousins how to swim and motivated us by throwing coins in my aunt’s swimming pool. He was a mariner who loved to spend days at sea and was also a published author. It was our love for the written word that drew us closer together in his later years.
All of this said, I miss the man and can’t get over the fact that I will never see him again. It’s upsetting and breaks my heart at the same time.
But he will be remembered.
During this Sunday’s Coaster Run, I will have this image affixed to my bib.
I am dedicating my run and medal to the memory of this great man whom I miss dearly.
This one’s for you, Uncle Lou. Thanks for everything.
Tags: chinatown, cycling, los angeles, weight loss, weight loss blog
So how did my Saturday go, you ask?
I woke up at 4:30 am, took a shower, got dressed, had a little breakfast, put the bike on the bike rack, hopped on the train, got to Chinatown, rode my bike almost 30 miles…and by the time I got home, it was nearly 3 pm. I was exhausted.
Anyway, here’s the day in pictures since I’m pooped. I am having trouble uploading the video of me lighting the firecrackers but when I can do it, I will post it. I had a great time doing that and riding today.
UPDATE: The video is up! Scroll to bottom of post.
Union Station is incredibly awesome. So many movies, shows and commercials were filmed here.
Waiting for the event. I got there way early.
Firefighter giving us tips on lighting. We had to wear helmets and goggles and when the firecrackers went off, even where we were standing, the debris was hitting us. We also had an option to wear earplugs which I did.
Near the top of one of the many hills we had to climb. Believe me, this was just the beginning!
Dodger Stadium, still looking as great as ever (even under construction).
Pit Stops were set up every 10 miles with goodies like this.
Warner Bros. Studios Gate 2. I worked here when I was on The Whole Truth.
Roy E. Disney Animation Building.
Walt Disney Studios. I worked there when I was on No Ordinary Family.
River sans bike trail. We rode along another river.
With my medal. It was pretty small. Here’s a better view.
I don’t drink beer but I thought I’d try. And to this day, I don’t know what compels people to drink that garbage. It’s awful stuff (but was free to all riders after the tour).
Even got a free meal afterward. And Chinese food in Chinatown? Nothing compares.
All in all, it was a beautiful day and a great event with awesome volunteers. Thanks to all of them, the organizers, and to the LAPD for keeping traffic in check while we rode along.
And seeing Los Angeles and its surrounding areas by bike? It’s just amazing as the pictures show. Being on a bike gave me a better idea of how big Griffith Park really is since we rode through and around it at times. The first 5 miles of this course were uphill and hearing into Griffith Park — and they were killers! That’s why I was happy to see the two rest stops at Mile 10 and Mile 20. They provided much needed nourishment for the ride, a very demanding ride at that. Riders were treated to peanut butter, energy gels, trail mix, Gatorade, fruit, etc. and it was all we could consume.
The Chinatown Firecracker Bike Ride was one of the most fun, well-run events I’ve done. It’s very close to Long Beach in terms of organization, helpful volunteers, etc. And even with few street closures, I was amazed at how well-behaved L.A. drivers were that day. It just made the day that much more brighter.
If you’re interested in my stats, then here they are via Sports Tracker app.
UPDATE: Here’s the video!