Sunday, May 29, 2011

Anatomy Of A Bike Crash

On Thursday, I was excited about going on a bike ride. I went and bought a helmet, put air in my bike's tires, set off for a 6- to 10-mile bike ride.... and promptly crashed about a half-mile into the ride.

That's the short story.

Here's the pictorial version.

I'd been riding for two minutes, had traveled a whopping .37 miles and was traveling at 14 miles an hour. And of course, I felt happy.

But then...

I went into the turn and noticed water. I tried to slow down. But...

... it was too late.

I was thrown off my bike, smacked my head on the asphalt, crushed my knee under the bike, scraped my arms and thumped my chest.

According to micoach app then, I was thrown off my bike at about 14 miles per hour.

I'm okay. Getting better, both physically and mentally.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bike Plan Crashed

I bought a bike helmet on Thursday. It was part of my grand scheme of doing my first run/ride. I had planned on running four miles and then riding my bike for another six or maybe even 10.

This plan seemed like a good plan but it blew up in my face.

I dropped the girls off at school and went straight to Target. I bought a nice-fitting helmet there and a few other things and I had intended afterward to pick up my bike and then head over the Mt. Rubidoux. There is a nice bike path over there and I figured it would be a great place to run and then ride. But it was close to 8:30 at that point and when I got home, I just decided to run/ride at home.

The run was great. I ran four miles in about 37 minutes, felt good doing so also. I know I could have run another two or three miles, maybe maintain that pace or not, but I could have gotten to seven miles easy. Instead, though, I wanted to save my strength for a bike ride.

I was curious to see how my muscles would react to bike riding after having run. Of course, it wasn't exactly a duathlon. Four miles running doesn't put a whole lot of stress on the body.

I figured out how to put on my helmet, adjusted it and then got both tires nice and filled with air. Soon after, I headed out, excited, hopeful.

I turned down one street, made a left and got near the end of that street. I went into a right turn when I noticed water. I didn't have a ton of time to react. I went through it and figured nothing would happen.

The back tire, though, had other ideas. The tire slid out from behind me, to the left. I hit the brakes and that's when all hell broke loose. The entire bike slid to the left and I was coming down. I looked up and saw the street rushing up towards me. My head smacked the ground but I barely felt anything. The helmet had served its purpose.

However, the helmet spared me from having any lingering head issues but couldn't protect the rest of me. My knee hurt the most initially. It was quite tender and swelling already. My arms had various scuffs on them but nothing stood out, just the knee. I got back on my bike, unsure of what to do. Almost immediately, though, my knee asked to go home. I hadn't even been a half mile when I fell. I went back a different way and wound up riding one mile.

I wasn't concerned about anything but getting home, of course. My knee felt strange, quite tender to the touch, and that's what I cared about. The ride was shot, nothing good had come of it, and in fact it served to all but shatter my confidence and motivation to ride.

As of this writing (it's late Thursday), my knee is in discomfort, pain sometimes, but I can walk okay on it. Turns out the biggest problem is my wrist. I've resorted to wearing Yvie's old brace to help stabilize it. Having some pressure makes it feel okay. The problem isn't moving my fingers and my wrist up and down or even side to side but when I try to rotate my hand or arm, like if you are turning a doorknob, that's when I get a shooting pain. The wrist looks a little swollen in comparison to the other wrist but I haven't gone to the doctor. I plan on going on Friday if things don't improve.

So there you have it. I get adventurous and try something new only to have this happen. Sigh.

My new helmet saved me from some head pain. Already paid itself off after one wear.

Kind of hard to tell but that's where I smacked myself. Some of that is dirt from falling - the street there was quite filthy - but my knee was already red and tender at this point.

Tres Cosas Jueves

1. Neglect: Wow. Can't believe it's been a week since I posted. Did not mean to intentionally neglect my beloved blog readers but just a combination of being busy and trying to find motivation. I've just been feeling like I'm in a rut here. I have a half marathon coming up and I'm not feeling like I've prepared enough for it. So me not feeling 100 percent mentally... it's tough to write interesting/motivating posts when they're not coming from an interesting or motivating source. But I am working on that. I've made it a goal to hit the ground running hard at Camp Pendleton for the Mud Run on June 18 and I think I'll make it happen.

2. P90X: Part of why I think I'll be feeling well then is that I've decided to do P90X. My brother Danny, who is lending me the stuff to do it, did P90X at the end of last year. Here is what he looked like before, at the 30-day and 60-day mark. I never saw a picture of the 90-day mark but he did get pretty rocked up.

This doesn't change anything though because I'm still the dominant one, but that's pretty good stuff. Don't know if you'll see a shirtless LB here but I'm hoping for similar results.

3. End Of The School Year: Today is the last day of school. Unreal! I don't think it necessarily flew by but May really did fly by. I swear it was just April and I was bracing myself for the final month of the school year. This is sort of strange, to have the last day of school come in May. Growing up, I always got out in June and always came back in September and never (luckily) had to do year-round school. But the school district here changed the calendar so now the girls are done in May. It's pretty cool, I have to be honest. We're going to enjoy our summer, thankfully the weather is more summer-like now so I foresee a beach trip next week... Either way, it's going to be nice to have lazy mornings at home pretty much any day we want.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Tres Cosas Jueves

1. Strepped Down: A couple of days ago, my throat started to bother me. It became increasingly more and more difficult to swallow. On Wednesday I took a look at my throat and one side was bigger than the other. Halls hadn't done anything to take the edge off, so with the urging of my wife I went to urgent care and found out that I have a strep throat. I'm sidelined now for a couple of days, hoping I will be able to run this weekend. I think the worst part is to remind myself to stay hydrated. I really don't want to eat or drink anything because it's like razor blades down my throat but oh well. Hopefully the antibiotics I was prescribed do the trick.

2. May Gray: April was a fairly warm month out here in SoCal, and May started out that way also. We figured spring was here and that our warm weather was too. On Wednesday, it rained and it was in the 60s. It's rained three of the last four days and it's been cool for more than a week, probably closer to two. I know, I don't get any grief from many of you but still... I want my warm weather! The girls will be out of school exactly one week from today and I had wanted to maybe go to the beach their first full week off. With the way it looks outside, though, it seems like it's time to stay indoors, drink some hot chocolate and watch movies.

3. Netflix: Do you have Netflix? We've had it for a while and we love it. We watch a lot of stuff through our Wii so we have Netflix Watch Instantly in our living room. It's really cool. Where it's been awesome is that I can further control what my girls watch or rather what they don't watch - commercials. I would hate it when the girls would tell me we needed some bullcrap that they saw on a commercial and they just would soak up all the products and stuff they were being marketed. It was annoying, but aside from not letting them watch TV at all, I was fighting a losing battle. Now, I don't like for them to watch too much TV anyway. I do limit their time no matter what and they're not addicted to the TV. But with the Netflix, there are no commercials, I can tell them one more episode or show or whatever and I'll know exactly when it ends and there are a lot of options for them to choose from. We watched all three seasons of Avatar: The Last Airbender, we're watching Flipper now, the girls have fallen for the Pink Panther (the original shows plus a newer version) and there are some old standbys on there like SpongeBob and Phineas and Ferb. Plus for me, there are some shows I like such as Bizarre Foods, Man vs. Food, No Reservations plus some shows I need to watch like Dexter. It's really changed the way we watch TV... well, at least the girls' viewing habits. For 10 bucks a month or so, you can't beat it.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Leading The Pace

It's not official yet but I received some good news earlier this week.

I'm going to be a pace leader when the Lopers clinic starts in August! I had put in my name to be a pace leader with the 10-minute pace group, the 10s, and it looks like that was a successful lobby on my part.

I'm going to be a co-leader with a runner I met just last year and who has been a great running friend, Alex (who is a she). So Alex and I will be in charge of the 10-minute pace group come August.

I'm pumped! I got a taste of being a pace leader last year when both of my group's pace leaders dropped out (one got pregnant, one had foot injuries) but it was sporadic and the group was small and it just never felt like my group to be honest. This time, though, we'll get the group from Day One and we can mold the group the way we think is best for the the runners involved. Our goal, and by "our" I mean the Lopers, is to help runners finish a marathon. There are a lot of first-time marathoners who come out and join the group but sadly many of them do not stick around, so our goal will be to have them all stick around until the very end.

The end will be the 2012 LA Marathon. That part's not official but I can't imagine not training for the LA Marathon. The Lopers trained for LA for years, save for a brief period when Surf City was the target marathon. But LA returned as the group's target in 2011 and it will likely remain as such.

Hopefully when that day rolls around, Alex and I will be leading a group of first-timers across the finish line at LA, and hopefully will be able to do it in about 4 hours 20 minutes.

Whatever the case, I have the chance now to influence others in a way that I've not quite been able to, and that's very appealing. I still hold firm to my beliefs - if I can lose 100-plus pounds and run a marathon (four of them, in fact) anyone can do that. Anyone. You just need a little determination, motivation, time and support. I'll offer my time and support and will try to motivate. Hopefully that's enough to help out the 10s come the fall and winter.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Post 1100... Plus

I missed a milestone.

Sometime in the last couple of weeks, I hit the 1,100 post mark.

Before, I'd sort of celebrated each milestone and I'd kept track of when I would hit the magic number. This time around, though, I lost count. I only officially counted posts that were published and since I had a lot of posts in draft mode, those didn't count to me but they counted towards the figure that shows up on the Dashboard. So my numbers were off.

I zapped all of the drafts and whittled the number down to 1,107. I guess this would be post no. 1,108 then. Good stuff.

As always, thank you for helping keep this blog up and running. Without readers, this blog would be... well, it probably wouldn't exist. So thanks for making me a part of your day/week/month.

Half Marathon Soon

Pretty soon, I'm going to run my fourth race of 2011 and my first half-marathon since November.The Fontana Days Half Marathon is right around the corner, on June 4 to be precise, and I've got my sights set on it.

Does that mean I'm going to PR? I don't know. My half PR is 1:55:03 and I don't know if I have that kind of time in me right now. I've been doing well to get in some speedwork and my legs have been responding but it just seems like a really fast time and I'm not sure if I will be able to keep up. I suppose it's because I haven't had a whole lot of time to train for this race so I don't feel like I've got the miles on my legs necessary to push myself for 13.1 miles.

Still, I do want to get as close to 1:55 as possible. I definitely want to get under two hours and I think that's possible.

While my legs might not be quite as strong as they were before the Long Beach 2010 Half Marathon, when I set my current PR, I have something else on my side.

This is the elevation chart for Fontana (image borrowed from my blog buddy Lisa at Discovering the Meaning on Stonehenge - a Runner's Journey).

Yeah, that would be all downhill. It's not just a slight decline either as it looks like a straight downhill shot. Now, Lisa ran this race last year and said parts of it did not feel as if they were downhill, but still I know that at worst it will feel flat and I won't have any hills to deal with.

I enjoy half marathons. They're not the monster that a full marathon is but it's still a challenging distance. If I take this distance too lightly, it will destroy me, so I'm doing my best to respect the distance, get my miles in, get some speedwork in, get some good solid training in.

I may not go for a PR but I will go for a strong finish. That much I know is within reach.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Still Here!

I'm still here.

I know my blogging hasn't been regular the last few weeks but I ain't going anywhere!

However, I did manage to lose a follower today. Not sure if readers expect more from my or not, but I lost someone. Maybe some readers want a post a day or something, and when I slowed down, they deemed this blog unworthy.

Sad face.

Anyway, I have been just taking it easy on the blogging, hitting my paying gigs a bit harder and trying to prepare for an adjustment period here in the summer, which will start soon enough for me.

I will be blogging this week though. Here are some of what I'll be blogging about...

* The Fontana Days Half Marathon, coming up on June 4
* My plans for the San Francisco Marathon - could be pacing my brother-in-law at the half marathon there
* Some happenings with the Lopers that would change the way I participate and interact with the club - for the better, trust me.
* I'd like to also blog about some non-running stuff, so might throw a post in about my pretty little ladies.

Hopefully that's enough to keep you around. See you on Tuesday morning!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Blogger Ate My Post, And Other Bits


Blogger was down for a while and now it's back but it zapped my post from Wednesday.

Super lame.

I wanted to sit down and write something here now, not sure what, but it took me some time to get Wednesday's post together and now it's gone so all that work for nothing. And now the fear is that I will put in a lot of work for nothing again.


But I don't want your visit to have been for nothing, so I will share with you a few things.

-- Fontana Days Half Marathon sold out! I'm so lucky I signed up when I did. Seriously though, for 35 bucks, you can't beat that price. Especially around here in SoCal, where you can't find a lot of half marathons for that price.

-- Some Loper friends have signed up for Long Beach. I wanted to run the full last year and that's now making me long for a full. I could run the full if...

-- ... I run the San Francisco Half instead of doing the full monty. My brother-in-law said he'd be willing to do the half in San Francisco and I think it would be a rewarding and awesome experience to run his first half marathon with him. I shall probe this further in a future post... maybe, unless Blogger wants to eat it, in which case I won't because I don't like my work to vanish.

-- After today, there are nine days of school left. You hear that, Newport and Huntington beaches? Yes, the Bueno clan is coming for YOU!!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Four Mile Monster

Four miles doesn't seem so bad, does it? When you train for and run marathons, trust me, four miles is not bad at all.

I had that thought in mind when I set out for a speedwork session on Wednesday morning. I had a simple plan. I had a four-mile route planned out and I'd run an easy first .5 of a mile and then start in on the speedwork. I'd run two minutes pretty fast, not all out but fast, and then two minutes easy. I figured I'd do that for a few miles, so maybe four to six of those sprints. That might get me close to four miles, so I'd tack on some time at the end to allow for a proper cooldown.

So, how did it work out?

Well, here's the speedwork in all its statistical glory.

Not bad, right? Looks like I had a good, solid run and met my goal.

The part in orange is basically fast. Red is like no way I can run that fast for more than a few steps, but orange is more like my 5K-10K pace.

Let me break down the segments for you to give you a feel of how it really went because there are some things this graph doesn't show.

Minutes 1-6

This is going to be fun. Well, not fun but it's going to a challenge. I wonder if four miles will be enough?

Wait, it seems like I'm going to fast. Time to dial it back some. I wonder if I'll have to remind myself to slow down during my easy parts.

Minutes 6-14

Okay, this is a pretty good clip. Just gotta keep this up here for a couple of minutes not bad. I wonder if this is my 5K pace or how fast I'm going.

Here we are, the one-mile mark. I wonder what my pace is?

micoach app: "Pace: 7 minutes 45 seconds per mile."

Alright, that's good, right?? I wasn't really trying to run at a 5K pace but, well, this is *speedwork* How much more time until I can slow down?

Minutes 14-24

Whew! This workout's really testing me. These rest segments aren't all that restful. I guess I'm still going fast but it's more like a 10K pace, well, faster than my 10K pace. Even though not sure it really feels like it, feels like I'm going slower.

I haven't slowed down though, so must be. I wonder if four miles is too long. Alright, here comes a rest. I could use a rest.

Minutes 24-28

Seriously?!? I just slowed down. How could the two minutes possibly be up? This stupid watch must be broken.

Minutes 29-33

Oh Lord, I think I have one more sprint left in me. Okay, let's go, legs churning, fight through it.



Aw crap, that's your 5K cough. I'm getting near puke threshold. Who's idea was it to run this stupid speedwork anyway? Four miles is too damn long.

Minutes 34-37





Oh... crap... I.... am done... with


the... sprints.

*clearing throat*

Can I be done, period? No? Crap. Oh well, finish strong... nah, screw that. Let's just cruise into the final. If I wanted to run fast at the end I'd have run another stupid two-minute segment.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

No Heel Issues... Yet

Mt. Rubidoux and I have been friends for a while. I started running Mt. Rubidoux with regularity in March 2010 and for a solid two months was going once or twice a week. Heel issues forced me to scale back on my running in June 2010 and part of that was giving up Mt. Rubidoux. I was going there every once in a while, off and on, nothing with any consistency. I was worried the heel pain would come back.

Lately, however, I've thrown caution to the wind. Since San Francisco is coming up soon (I'll have some more thoughts on San Francisco in another blog post), I kind of have to start running hills again. So lately I've been hitting Mt. Rubidoux hard. I ran five miles there on Monday, four on Friday, six the Monday before that and I went at least twice the week before that.

How's my heel? Well, so far, so good.

I was worried that I would be hobbling around once more, or at the very least feel some discomfort when I wasn't running. But there hasn't been anything out of the ordinary thus far. I'm not going to celebrate too much, though, because this could turn into a problem as it did last year. I wasn't really feeling a whole lot when I first started running hills in 2010 but after a few solid months of pounding, I was feeling it.

I'm going to be more cautious this time, though. Well, that's the plan. I'll try and listen to my body more this time than last year and if I feel the onset of such heel pain, try and ease back a little. But Mt. Rubidoux is intoxicating! That's the only problem, of course. It's always a challenge, always a fun challenge too. I can't think of another 4-mile route, or 5-mile route, or 6-mile route, or 6-plus-mile route around here that is so enjoyable and so challenging.

I'll probably go out there once more this week as Mt Rubidoux won me over a long time ago. Hopefully it's also won over my heel as well.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Shave It Or Keep It?

So.... what do you think?

I recently let my beard grow out. I hadn't done that since... I can't remember. I don't mean like I let my beard grow out as in I hadn't shaved in a few days or so, but rather as in I went without shaving for several weeks on purpose.

I don't know when I started to just let my beard grow out but I did, but on Thursday I finally got tired of it. But instead of just shaving back to my usual self, I decided to play around with it.

First, my bearded look...

And now, my current look...

Okay... there was one step in between there but I just skipped that picture. It was pretty strange looking.

What do you think?

This look probably won't last long. I'm probably going to shave the sideburns off today but I figured I'd get some opinions on it in case I wanted to grow them out at some point.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Tres Cosas Jueves

1. Mentoring: I may get into this in more detail but for now just wanted to share this. My brother-in-law asked me to help him run long distances. He's been running off and on for a while, but no more than three miles. He used to be in the Army and ran then of course but that was more than 10 years ago. I feel honored and excited about the opportunity. He's expressed interest in running a half marathon this summer as well. For that, you'll have to wait because it could also have a bit of an effect on what I do this summer too. But it's great that I'm able to help him along. We had our first run together last weekend as we ran three miles together. Saturday we're doing four and then we'll progress little by little afterward. He says his ultimate goal is to run a marathon so I'm definitely going to be there for that, both in training for it and possibly running it with him. This mentoring thing is something I can sink my teeth into.

2. Summer Already? It was 94 degrees out here on Wednesday, and Tuesday it also was north of 90 degrees. We've been going through a bit of a heat wave as 2011 bypassed spring and went straight into summer. Right? Well, the forecast is a bit more kind once the weekend hits. It's supposed to get down into the 70s this weekend and possibly even into the high 60s early next week before leveling off in the mid-70s for the next week or so after that. I'm not complaining about the heat necessarily but it would be nice to have a spring so I don't have to run in the heat quite yet. We don't get snow around here and we have mild winters compared to what some of you have to endure but the flip side of that is that it's below or at triple digits for a good three months, and the longer we can hold that off, the better off we'll be.

3. Hairdos: A couple of weeks ago I mentioned how I need to figure out more hairdos for the girls. I think this summer I'm going to spend some time with them trying new things. I follow this really cool blog about hairdos for little girls but most of them, I'm like "Yeah, right." Still, there are some basic ones on there that could be worth experimenting with. Anyway, here's some of my recent handiwork.

Alright, not perfect. I could part Kennedy's hair way better than that. In fact, I think it was Tuesday this week I did pigtails but then I braided them and it looked good but I didn't take a picture (sad face). Yvie's bun is cool. I like how it turned out but the problem with that is I'm not sure how long it stays. I can't recall if it stayed in the whole day or not. I think it did but it was falling out when she got home from school. Anyway, that's two recent good-hair days that weren't just the usual ponytail hairdos. Hopefully when they start school in the fall I'll have some more things in the rotation. Oh, and Kennedy's ribbons... totally my idea. Yup. I saw those ribbons floating around in the bathroom and just figured, why not? It's actually kind of awesome and sad at the same time that I was inspired in such a way.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Fontana Days Half, All Downhill From Here

I finally signed up for my next race. It only took a bit of fear to do it.

I will be racing in the Fontana Days Half Marathon on June 4. The race cost me a whopping 38 dollars (and that's including the fees). I was worried that it might sell out... well, I believe last year's race sold out for the first time ever, but I was worried that I would not decide to register for it until it was too late.

The Fontana Days Half Marathon is a pretty unique event. It is all downhill, and race organizers say it's the fastest half marathon in the world. It's a point-to-point race that ends outside of the Fontana City Hall offices - Fontana is a ghetto town very close to where I live. City Hall is probably about six miles from here. So we'll park there and then take buses up to the start line. The race is supposed to start at 7 a.m., and if you've been to SoCal in June, you know that that could mean some very warm temperatures throughout the race.

The half marathon is also the oldest half marathon in the U.S. The first Fontana Days Half was held in 1955, just a little bit before my time.

This is also a bit of a special event for me. The 2008 Fontana Days 5K was my first-ever race. I remember being at the finish line area and watching the half marathoners come in and being in awe of them. Some of them looked like they were really gunning for the finish line and I just was amazed that someone could have that much energy after running 13.1 miles. I vowed to run the half marathon the following year but in 2009 I was in Costa Rica on the day of the event and in 2010 I was doing the Camp Pendleton Mud Run. So this is the first time I've been free and nearby on that day.

What's my goal? Originally, it was to PR. I mean, you can't run a downhill race and not go for a good time, right? What would a PR mean? A finish of better than 1:55:03. I don't know though, there's not a whole lot of time between now and then, and I'd not have a lot of time to work on speedwork and that. I will definitely go for a sub-2 finish and we'll see as the race gets closer if I have done well enough to have a realistic shot of setting a new PR.

Maybe someday I'd like to run a half marathon in 1:49:59 or faster and maybe that is only possible for me on this downhill course. That's not this year but if nothing else I'll be able to get a feel of what this race and this course is about so when I am able to shoot for a massive half PR I'll have an idea of what I have in front of me.

Either way, I'm excited about Fontana Days officially kicking off my summer race calendar!

Monday, May 2, 2011

April Recap

Wow, it's May already. When did that happen and what happened to April?

Anyway, May's gonna be a fun month both running and with the family. I'll explain.

April Recap/Stats

Miles Ran: 75

Highest Mileage Week: 36

Long Runs Ran: 2 (10, 26.2)

Favorite run: Diamond Valley Lake Marathon on 4/9

Least Favorite run: There are no such things for me, I enjoy running and try to enjoy every run.

Most hardcore run: It doesn't get much more hardcore than a marathon, and then to run a marathon that is apparently for hardcore marathoners... well, that kinda makes the DVL Marathon a hardcore run.

Race(s): Have I mentioned I ran the Diamond Valley Lake Marathon?? I'm still and will forever be glowing in the aftermath of that race.

Current Reads: Am reading a couple of books on mountain climbing, maybe I'll blog about that

Current Shame-Inducing Guilty Pleasure: Playing a game on the girls' Nintendo DS. I blame Mrs. LB since she started playing it first. It's a puzzle game called Jewel Master. Addicting.

Current Obsessions: Playing board games (Dominion mostly, which is actually a card game). I blame my brother Danny.

Current Drink: Water. Agua. Wasser.

Current Song: Ready to Start, by Arcade Fire. That song's legit. Arcade Fire won Grammy for Best Album of the Year, and that whole album has for me lived up to such a lofty award.

Current Wish-List: To get my Sirius re-installed in my truck

Current Need: I need to register for a handful of races that I'm planning on doing here in the next few months.

Current Triumph: Having run Marathon No. 4.

Current Bane of my Existence: Bad drivers. I take the long way to places a lot around here because I go the less-traffic way because otherwise these bad drivers just irritate me. Grrr...

Current Goal: To get to averaging 40 miles a week.

Current Indulgence: Trail mix. I swear I never buy the stuff because I pop it in my mouth like candy.

Current Blessings: Yvonne and Kennedy, daddy's superstars.

Current Excitement: School gets out on May 26! Beach trips, bike rides, walks up Mt Rubidoux, trips to the library and - best of all - lazy mornings around the house... that's what the girls and I have to look forward to afterward. How can you NOT get excited about that??