Sunday, March 23, 2008

Family or running?

I had a chance to think about the above question the other day. Last Thursday, a public holiday here, I set off to my Bulgarian mate's house for a spring BBQ. My wife went somewhere else so I took the kids as "Tiho" has kids too and I thought with the kids playing we would be able to get down to some serious talking, eating and drinking. A win win situation :)

About 20 minutes into the BBQ my youngest "Tyler" and Tiho's youngest "George" 4 and 5 respectively said they were going to the park next door and we waved them off in that direction busy with putting the first slabs of meat on the barbie.

After a beer, a chat and a nibble I left the BBQ zone to just check in on the kids.
I briefly looked through the hedges and a nonchalantly commented to Tiho, "Kids aren't in the park." "I'll go and get them and we'll put the sausages on for them eh" "Right then" said Tiho. It was from this moment that one of the worst days of my life played out.

Forward 7 hours later, it was dark, I was searching the reed beds that fringed a large nearby pond and elsewhere, neighbours, friends, family and dozens of local police were also searching for our two little boys. About 9:30pm I got a call on my mobile phone. It was Tiho saying "They found the boys!" I promptly sat down in the long grass and cried tears of pure joy and relief.

Apparently they were found about 8 kms away trying to get a bus home,with no money and to where they had no idea. A person getting off the bus at the same time took them to the police station.

As I was searching all those hours, in vain, for the boys I thought a lot about my values and my family and I can tell you I didn't think about "running" at all. But to be fair when I'm running I don't think about my "family" either ;) Still there is no question what my first priority is. Without the presence, love and support of my family I couldn't enjoy anything life has to offer.

So I'd better start with some actions to prove my supposition. The first being to not complain about my wife's cooking. See comic below ;)

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Half Marathon PB

Had a nice run today and feel I made up for the last half I ran. It was perfect weather the course was mostly flat, very scenic, with only 3 long hills to slow us down, still made up for it on the downsides.

Happy today because apart from finally getting some good weather I felt in control. Usually when I PB I feel at the limit of my potential but today, at least after the race, I felt I could have gone faster.

My time was 1:27:26 (chip) a PB for me and bit of redemption. Also I feel like I'm on the right track with my training and my hamstring problem wasn't a problem today. So onwards and upwards. Thanks for your continued support :)

I'll upload a few photos from the day. Me my kids and I.
The whole family stayed at a hotspring resort the night before so the weekend in total was very enjoyable and relaxing.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Miyama marathon (half)

Hello, thanks to everyone for their understanding in regards to Canberra, sure it's disappointing but put in perspective not so bad. I will have the chance to meet you all at some stage, I'm sure. Got to be happy just to run in any capacity.

Well things on the running front aren't too bad, I've been doing a lot of weights and eating well and have dropped a couple of kilos in three weeks. I have been doing some core exercises and generally feel much stronger than I did when I ran my last half marathon almost 4 weeks ago.

I have another half this Sunday, "The Miyama Marathon", so I will be able to see how the drop in weight and extra strength will translate to in time. I want to at least break 1:30:00 but I'll see how it goes on the day.

I've heard that it takes at least 12 weeks of good training, be it weights or running, for it to really show up with improved performance so I'll keep up the training regime until it bears fruit.

The photo above was taken at Miyama by my, "Kawachinagano Running Club" buddy Mr. Kato. Thanks for that :)

Monday, March 03, 2008

Canberra a go go? Canberra a no go!

This song's related to what I wanted to do, "cry" and dedicated to my dear mother a Canberra native and a great fan of Elvis.

I've been very much planning and looking forward to running in Canberra. Particularly to meeting my friends that will go there and up until a week ago I was still in countdown mode but circumstances have conspired to bugger up my plans as I'll explain.

Firstly I'd like to let you know that I agonized over this decision but in the end it was the way I think I had to go.

My bum leg, hamstring strain, has stubbornly stuck with me and although it hasn't stopped me from running it's meant that I've been running shorter mileage so as not to aggravate it further. I thought that was going to be OK as I was doing a lot of extra cross training that was keeping up the fitness and bringing down my weight so it was all going to even out. I was happy thinking I could run a half decent race even though it wouldn't be a PB.

I really think just running would have been OK in this case as I would be among friends, so to speak, and frankly I wanted to see this race and see what Canberra is like now. It's been such a long time since I've been there. I have a strong connection to Canberra as my Mother was born there, I've been there heaps and I have many cousins still living there.

Anyway a week ago I was offered a job at a decent University here and basically couldn't turn it down. With this new job comes a lot of benefits but I will have to start on April 7th and they don't want me taking my second week at work off. I will get almost 20 weeks holidays but none during the Canberra Marathon. I guess I could have pushed it, lied and said I have to go back for a funeral but I can't do it being the honest guy I am ;)

I think that once I'm in I will be able to swing a few unscheduled holidays to coincide with the Canberra and Gold Coast Marathons but not this year :(

My wife seeing that I was so upset about missing Canberra promised we could go to Oz on a family vacation for the whole of August and half of September I could stay there by myself to do anything, well almost anything, I wanted. Got to be happy with that consolation prize ;)

I'm really sorry mainly cause I'm not going to have the chance to met you all next month and besides I really hate to go back on my word in any situation. But I will continue to work toward the goal of running PBs and running a few of them on Aussie soil. And you know, us Australians, we rarely if ever give up ;)