Sampling

Sep. 4th, 2017 01:00 pm
tegyrius: (Default)
The girl and I went out to Reed Valley Orchard this morning. We came home with 42 pounds of apples (which we bought by volume, but which averaged out to 95¢/lb) and about 10 pounds of pears.

We may wind up needing to buy a dorm fridge to store our pomological excess.

Also, over the summer, I got the girl a dehydrator for her birthday. As it so happens, six large apples in 1/4" slices will just about fill its five trays.

And if you need to core a lot of apples in a hurry, a power drill with a 5/8" spade bit will do the job quite nicely. I advise wearing safety glasses and holding the apples in the sink as you drill them. The process produces a small amount of debris but distributes it widely...

ETA: Also, ran four miles this morning. Average pace was crap - 12:06 - but still. Four miles.

39:07

Aug. 26th, 2017 08:42 pm
tegyrius: (Default)
So I ran this morning. 3.15 miles, just spitting distance beyond 5k. Crappy pace by the standards I try to hold myself to, 12:25 mile average, but I got it done without stopping and I didn't curl up in pain afterward. Little sore from the bouncing but I'm mostly functional after three weeks off and don't seem to have lost too much cardio.

Still not gonna get back on the bike for at least another week, though. Only seems prudent.

Afterward, the girl and I got breakfast from our favorite local bakery and had a picnic in a park before hitting the farmers' market. Then I persuaded her to come with me to the range and work the spotting scope while I put a hundred-yard zero on a rifle. Afterward, we drove around the farm roads looking for birds, but they were mostly off work, save for the usual vultures and a couple of hawks. Got lunch at a local barbecue place that is far better than its squeaky-clean appearance suggests. Came home, cleaned said rifle, and took care of some paperwork management that I'd been putting off for a while.

Not a bad day.

Wobbly

Aug. 20th, 2017 01:12 pm
tegyrius: (Default)
First day back in the gym after two weeks off for surgical recovery.

Wow, conditioning went to hell fast. I didn't do any leg work except a few squats and I came out of there barely able to walk.

Admittedly, low blood sugar might have had something to do with it. Maybe I should have eaten more than half an apple beforehand.

Still not ready to try running again. I'm thinking next weekend for that. Biking is right out for the moment.

Cumulative

Aug. 1st, 2017 07:09 am
tegyrius: (Default)
The new job has a few benefits that aren't immediately evident on the total value of compensation sheet. Among these are a location and commute route that are somewhat conducive to biking and an employee gym with $7/month membership and free personal trainer sessions.

So my exercise log for July looks a little something like this:



R = run (Couch to 5k ongoing, with yesterday being my first unbroken 5k since last October).
G = gym.
B = bike commute (7 miles each way).

I'm not going to be able to maintain that consistent of a tempo once the kids move in again and our operational tempo ramps up, but I think it's a pretty good first month.

Rotary

Jul. 3rd, 2017 05:47 pm
tegyrius: (Default)
So. First bike commute today. Picked this date for low expected traffic, as I figured a good portion of the city took the day off. Campus was certainly a wasteland.

Out: 7.04 miles in 40:45. Average speed 10.4 mph.

Back: 6.97 miles in 38.28. Average speed 10.9 mph.

I figured I'd shave off more mileage on the return leg with the altered route I took, but that did not happen. Hm.

My legs are dizzy.

Probably won't do another one this week due to gym and gaming schedules, but I think I can handle this.

T&E

May. 28th, 2017 10:28 am
tegyrius: (Default)
Spent most of the week on the road for work. It was a good trip - a conference on emergency management in my current focus area - but I had to be socially on constantly. Got back around dinnertime Thursday night and was basically useless all day Friday, even with a half-day off (we put in some extra hours during the conference for various reasons). I did get in one run Thursday morning but otherwise it was a week of too much restaurant food and not enough exercise.

After a week of not being here, I resumed the bike experiment today. This morning's ride was 8.5 miles at just over 9 miles per hour. That includes a couple of stops to talk to E, who was out walking (and conducting digital gladiatorial battles with Japanese pocket monsters), but it's still not the sort of speed I need to sustain if I'm going to commute this way.

The bike shop warned me that bike tires lose air faster than car tires, and they weren't kidding. The tires on the new ride are spec'd for 65-100 psi and they were sitting around 50. Found out that the floor pump they sold me didn't come with an adapter for my valve stems, which pissed me off, but the compressor from my car kit took care of the job quite nicely. I still have some adjustment issues with the front brakes and the front derailleur, but I'll let the professionals handle those next weekend.

Wildlife seen on today's ride: the resident snapping turtle in the creek in the park. Two yard ducks. Most interestingly, a Cooper's hawk soaring across a residential street in front of me and pulling up (and through tree branches) to parallel me for a few seconds. I heard a lot of bird-squabbling around that time but didn't see anyone pursuing or being pursued.

Also tested today: bike shorts, which look just as ridiculous as you'd expect but do significantly increase comfort thanks to the built-in nad pad (a term which I am now trademarking). As they do not include pockets, I also rode with the chest harness I use to hold my phone and ID and keys while I'm running. It, too, looks mildly ridiculous, but it's far more secure than the pockets of any normal shorts I own. So two successful gear checks there.

Cyclic

May. 13th, 2017 06:14 pm
tegyrius: (Default)
So... cardio has been really hard to acquire and maintain with thrice-weekly runs the past couple of years. And I have this university job on a campus where they're trying to discourage excessive car use (in no small part because the parking infrastructure is twenty pounds of shit in a ten-pound bag). And, based on Dad's example, my joints aren't gonna hold up to running indefinitely. And I've been looking for other ways to stay less-unfit.

So I bought myself a bicycle.

I think the last time I was on a bike was 1992. I probably didn't ride more than a dozen times after I got my driver's license (which may explain why my junior year cross-country season, when I didn't have a car, was far more successful that my senior year...).

This has the potential to be an epic debacle. The eventual intent is commuting. I'm definitely gonna have to build up to that. I did a 3.5-mile test ride around the neighborhood this afternoon. I didn't fall off but I wasn't exactly displaying laser-like precision, either.

On the plus side, holy shit, an aluminum-frame bike is a lot lighter than anything I remember. 24.2 pounds for this thing. And these indexed shifters that have become a thing in the past 25 years beat the hell out of the old ratchety ones.

Steps

Sep. 5th, 2016 11:06 am
tegyrius: (Warning Self-Replicating Device)
I may have blogged before (I'm too lazy to go back and check right now) about my Garmin ForeRunner 235. It's a GPS running watch with some other functions. One of those is an accelerometer-based activity tracker.

One of the problems with a wrist-based tracker (as opposed to, say, a waist-clipped FitBit) is that it only picks up steps when you're swinging your arm. So activities like pushing a grocery cart - or, mowing, which is worth about 4,500 steps in my yard - don't get tracked accurately.

However.

I've discovered that my ankle is just slim enough that I can put the watch on it at the very last notch in the band. This is enough to get an accurate accelerometer trigger on each step.

Downside? Black electronic device strapped to my ankle while I'm out mowing. I'm pretty sure some of my neighbors think I'm under home incarceration.

Monitored

Jun. 25th, 2016 02:37 pm
tegyrius: (Warning Ubiquitous Surveillance)
For the last two years, I've been tracking my runs with a Suunto Ambit 2R GPS sports watch, which I also wore as an everyday digital watch. The Ambit itself has been reliable but in the last six months, both the charging/sync cable and the chest strap for the heart rate monitor have needed replacement. I'm also not a fan of the user interface on Suunto's associated exercise data site, Movescount.

About six weeks ago, I picked up a Garmin Forerunner 235 as a possible replacement for the Ambit. I'd gone around and around on this versus a couple of other products. What finally sold me on the 235, quite frankly, was my annual REI dividend - enough to effectively get the watch for free. But the feature set was one I wanted in an upgrade: Bluetooth sync so I wouldn't have to jack with a cable after every run, an optical heart rate monitor to remove the need for a separate chest strap, and notifications from my iPhone.

Was it worth it? )

Humidity

Jul. 1st, 2015 08:36 pm
tegyrius: (snark harden the fuck up)
I hates it so.

I've gotten bad about posting here since I started running. Part of that is the dwindling LJ audience and the commensurately reduced social rewards for posting. I think I have two or three readers left. Everyone else seems to have fucked off for the chaotic ubiquity of Facebook (or social media platforms that aren't even on my radar). But I've also fallen into the trap of thinking my private run log posts are sufficient activity, even though no one but me sees them.

This has been a bad year for running. 2014 was... not good, by the standards I set for myself, but encouraging. I went from nothing in summer 2013 to being technically capable of a 5k by April 2014 (Couch to 5k worked, holy shit). In high school, my PR for a 5k was 21:55 - thoroughly uncompetitive but at least I was doing it. I've accepted that I'm never going to see times like that again. But last fall, as the humidity sloped off and morning temperatures dropped into the fifties, I was regularly posting sub-9:15 mile averages. On October 16th, I set an adult PR of 3.17 miles in 28:48 - a 9:04 average. We were regularly hitting the road three days a week.

Everything went to hell over the winter and really didn't improve during spring. Illness, holiday overcommitment, shitty weather, losing Dad, and [livejournal.com profile] elalyr's miserable tax season beat us down so badly that between mid-December and the beginning of May, we averaged less than one run a week. There were a couple of stretches in which we didn't get in a single run for over two weeks.

The winter of 2013-14, we maintained some conditioning. Last winter, we went completely to shit. When we restarted in May, it took me a full month to get back to the point of doing 5k without a walk break.

Then... summer. And it really is the humidity, not the heat. It's not enough that the thin, hot air carries less oxygen. Oh, no. In top of that, it's been so humid that sweat won't evaporate. I weighed myself on Saturday before and after running and I lost 1.8 pounds of water over 3.28 miles. I think all of that quart was still in my clothes or dripping off my skin when I finished. Which means no evaporative cooling. Heat management should be an issue for overclocked computer processors, not me.
tegyrius: (snark harden the fuck up)
A year ago, [livejournal.com profile] elalyr and I started the Couch to 5k program. At the beginning, I had some rather ambitious goals. In retrospect, it was kinda stupid to think I could reverse 21 years of self-neglect so quickly. Still, the data are interesting.

When I was running cross-country in high school, my personal record for a 5k was 21:55 (average mile time of 7:04). My goal for this time around was to be capable of 24:00 (average mile time of 7:45) by March. That... hasn't happened. I didn't get my endurance up to even be capable of a 5k until April 27th. A year in, my best 5k time is a 29:11 (9:12 average mile). Max distance thus far has been 5 miles flat, which I've only done on two occasions.

However.

I was already losing weight when I started this, thanks to more attentive eating. My attention to intake has fallen off but I've been maintaining at or just under 170 for most of this year. I've probably reclaimed another inch of waistline - anything without elastic absolutely requires a belt to stay on.

So, yeah. Worth doing. Worth continuing. I'll probably stop posting run updates to LJ unless I have a particularly good new record to report, but I don't want to stop. I'm often tired and sore and wishing I'd stayed in bed another 45 minutes but the results are generally worth it anyway.

Vesta

Nov. 25th, 2013 06:41 am
tegyrius: (Ol' Velvet Nose)
3,500 words yesterday. Some of it's going to have to come back out, as it's way over one section's alloted word count, but it all feels like worthwhile content.

Skipped today's run. I've been fighting a sore throat all weekend, had some gastrointestinal ambiguities last night, and remain sore from Saturday's move. Also, it's 25º out there. I'm not happy about the first miss since we started Cto5k but I think my body needs it.

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