Monday, September 21, 2020

Bay To Breakers Virtual Recap


It's been awhile since last posting.  The blogger has changed the format a little bit but it's a little easier to do a blog nowadays.  Compared to this time last year, this runner-blogger is in a lot better shape and have avoided the serious injuries.  Just getting out and running despite the pandemic is a fortunate but trying time for all of us.

Some 39 races in and over 1100 miles, I made the decision a few weeks ago to run my 43rd Bay To Breakers 12K as a virtual race.  All of us would have much rather run this in May but the pandemic wouldn't let us.  Because of my age, I didn't want to defer to 2021 and have to pay a deferral fee.  That is a subject I will talk about in a future post!

About a week ago, all of us who were going to do this virtually were wondering if we would do it at all.  Because of the fires in California, Oregon and Washington, the air quality was really bad.  There were several days of running little to not running at all.  However, the last several days before last Sunday was more tolerable and on went the run.

I started the virtual race at roughly 7:55 am and would stop the watch only if I reached a traffic light and was forced to stop.  It happened three times over the 12K distance with it being nonstop for the remaining 3 1/2 miles in Golden Gate Park and the Great Highway.  There was some construction work around Hayes and Franklin Streets but was able to avoid that.

I didn't use my Garmin for several reasons.  One of them was the Salesforce Tower which seems to add mileage to the watch when running by.  Knowing the course as I do,  there was the markings on the streets to get the splits.  The Timex Ironman was the watch used.

The weather was comfortable but a little humid.  I brought a water bottle to stay hydrated.  The traffic was very light.  On Howard Street, the bike lane was used.  When getting to Hayes, it was the sidewalk until passing Gough and then the left side of the street until reaching Divisadero.  When turning on Fell, it was the sidewalk until about a block before Stanyan when moving over to the bike lane again.

The slowest mile was between mile two and mile three (Hayes Street Hill) at 10:52.  It was the usual struggle between Fillmore and Steiner Streets but nothing like when training on it back in April-May.  The fastest mile was between mile six and mile seven at 8:19.  That is mostly downhill.  What was nice was it was the third of three sub 8:32 miles.  Definitely nice to see the training paying off.

Finishing in the parking lot,  I saw about a half dozen runners that appeared to already finish their runs.  There was a brief chat between a couple of runners.  We talked a little about the virtual race, the pandemic and baseball, of all things.  Afterwards, a slow jog over to where Playland At The Beach used to be and the #5 MUNI bus back to Civic Center.  Then there was the walk/jog home from there.

The 43rd edition wasn't exactly how I wanted to run and complete this.  However, it's been about five years since running this race in better condition and without injury.  That's all that one can ask for.     

Monday, June 8, 2020

Chilling

As things are right now, this runner-blogger is greatly cutting back on the training.

It's not the minor injury from last week from dodging a speeding vehicle.  The left hip and leg are fine after a couple of days.

With the continued pandemic,  running every day (or nearly) doesn't really make sense right now when only virtual races are the reason.  Don't get me wrong here!  Virtual races, to me, are no more than time trials on a road or track.  Since mid March, at least one has been on the calendar each week.  There have me no entry fee on those run and completed.

Ever since getting into running, the mindset is to train to run the best race distance and time.  Doing it for fun has always been secondary to running a personal best or even a season best.

To a couple of close running friends of mine, they constantly tell me that this is a problem of mine.  Always, I listen to their side of it, but there is always the determination to get better during a running season.

Lately, the training has been awful.  There have been numerous ways of doing something different each day.  One day, it's doing speed training with the next day is a slow run.

There is doing a different route each day, even some that I haven't done before.  That has become stale to speak.

On Sunday (yesterday), after a mile when it was supposed to be a 10 kilometer run, I stopped and walked back to the apartment.  It was like, "why is this guy out here?"

After posting on the Strava account, this runner did some soul searching.  Right now, it will be four days a week maximum until the possibility of road races happen this year with people running in them.

Trying to be positive, yet frank, that seems like a long, long ways away!

Sunday, May 31, 2020

Angry And Disgusted

Normally, I would be sharing a running post whether it is on training or an accomplishment.  However, today is different.

This runner is angry and disgusted and it is not about running.

I'm angry and disgusted with the United States Of America.

You could say that there is some blame to go around here.  If anyone who reads this thinks that this blogger is wrong with his statement, I'm sorry.  Maybe it's best you don't read any further.  Just for starters, let's go back about a week to Memorial Day 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  If you haven't been watching the news, reading a newspaper or communicating with friends, your head is "in the sand" as far as I'm concerned.  Unbury your head and wake up!

Racism, bullying and cyber bullying, threats on people's lives and law enforcement brutality, to begin with, have no place in this society! 

I'm not African American, Asian, Native American or Hispanic.  However, I'm grateful for my late parents.  I'm grateful to my fellow students from Kindergarden through the 12th grade and to the schools attended.  Also, from my first job with AT&T to my last job with the San Francisco Giants, I'm grateful for that.

Everywhere I've been, I have met and become friends with whites and people of color.  I'm grateful for it.  Hopefully, it has made the world a little better place for everyone I've met.

This blogger is far from perfect.  I ask myself every morning when waking up what I could do to make this world a little better place.

This morning, after finishing my run, I was walking up Pine Street heading home.  On the corner of Pine and Kearny, there was a CVS store that was broken into.

Continuing up the hill to Pine and Grant Streets, I saw a souvenir shop that was broken into.  It is located in San Francisco's Chinatown.  There was another person at the scene as well besides the owner. 

While the owner was making a phone call, I offered and eventually borrowed his broom.  The broken glass in front of the store was swept up and put it into a garbage can.

This owner and his, or her business was affected by the events of the last week.  Ironically, on television later in the day, I saw people in South Minneapolis trying to clean up an area that has been "trashed" over the past few days.  Other cities have begun cleanup operations  

Hopefully, I can see the difference between what's right and wrong.  Though I believe in peaceful protests, I'm angered and disgusted with property being destroyed in cities around the country.  Owners of businesses, already affected by the COVID-19 pandemic are being hurt further.  It must stop!  Constructive is better than destructive!

Before closing, kudos to a 17 year old girl and several other bystanders for videoing a horrific scene leading to a death of an unarmed African American man in Minneapolis on Memorial Day.  If I had been in her shoes, I would have done the same thing.  A third degree murder charge is not enough here.  The charge should be changed to first degree murder.  Also, the other three officers in the immediate area must be charged as well.  As of this post, charges have not been filed.  That is wrong!

We can do much better than this!

Please have a good week ahead everyone!