Friday, April 23, 2010


More reading as of late...Running with the Buffaloes by Chris Lear. This is the new book on the plate. Lots of running books recently means lots of excitement for returning to running. This doesn't mean I have forgotten about climbing, but sometimes you need to do other things. I have completed three untimed 5 milers at a steady pace and two timed shorter runs. I am against listening to music and running and against wearing a watch. Well, not so much against the watch but not knowing your pace keeps you listening to you body and not focusing on numbers (I already do that enough in climbing).

This running book makes the fourth in two months, and after the first I made the decision to begin running again. Running is liberating, an investment, and a struggle. Most of all, it is rewarding. I was told once that people are less likely to achieve something if they tell others about small successes en route. However, I chose to begin running again about two months ago with a track workout. Four quarters at a stead pace with a quarter jogged as rest between laps. I could not complete the workout, but the purpose was to measure the current fitness level. Four runs, three books, and two months later, it was time to "check in" again. I managed a 5:55 mile on a treadmill at the gym. Certainly not a glorious time for the masses, but it was a personal best for me. The best part about it was setting the treadmill to a pace to follow and realizing that I've been running sizeable portions of my longer training runs at a higher heartrate. It would be nice to run a sub 5 minute mile sometime this summer, maybe even a 4:30, but the joy of covering ground is enough for now.

The climbing is on the up and up as well, as Target would say. I've been exclusively sport climbing for about three weeks now. Prior to that it was more or less thirty days in a row of weight lifting. It seems the running and sport climbing are working well together for now, and this is a wonderful time of year to be living in the Republic of Boulder.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Once a Runner

I finally received my disposables back. Disposable cameras that are left to the elements for an undetermined amount of time and then placed in the muted bio-system of a car produce visually terrible pictures. However, more than a few had a bit of sentimental value. I suppose it should be that way if it takes a person twelve months to take roughly twelve pictures. So none will make this blog, but you might just get one in the mail!

On a side note from this "weekend," which was really not a calendar weekend but a retail weekend, Greg Mionske and I both acquired our first pairs of Jordans. Needless to say they improved our basketball skills exponentially.

Well, I've been working a ton the past week and a half, turned down a job as a tax claims investigator (who wants to help people figure out how they mismanaged a part of their lives for 40+ hr/wk), and started sport climbing for real this time. I saw the bodies exhibit at the Denver Arts and Sciences Museum, which was too cool and such poignant day that I was nearly reminiscing about everything as it was happening. Crazy. I paid another month of medical bills and finished another book. Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr. is the best book I have read this year. It is second only to The Little Prince on my all-time list, and this is quite a statement for those who understand. I can't remember the last time I sat in a silent room and laughed so much and felt such an overwhelming since of exhilaration as training regimens were described, practical jokes unfolded, and feelings were illustrated. Beautiful, insightful, hilarious, brilliant, and inspiring. Hope the sequel is somewhere near the same ballpark.

One of these days I will have pictures again. And one of these days I will climb outside again, but I'm in no rush for either at the moment.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Born to Run

I finished yet another book today; Christopher McDougall's Born to Run . To anyone who has known me for some time, you will understand the magnitude of me reading a book for pleasure. This one makes it my fourth in two months. Who knew reading could be so compelling! It's the slow drip IV version of the television. Wonderful entertainment.
Born to Run is a nationally accalimed best seller, but this doesn't always mean a person is going to like it. Take The Kite Runner for example. I couldn't even finish 20 pages before I was wholistically uninterested. Anyway, the book was wonderful. The author tells the story of the development of American ultra running and parallels that with the rich running history of a Mexican tribe known as the Tarahumara. Having read this, I am definitely inclined to question my eating habits, run more, and how Michael Hickman's life story sounded as if it could be my own. Strange how insightful and thought-provoking reading can be.

Sunday, April 4, 2010


A year ago this month I strained my back in Bishop. Had I not done that I probably would've continued to climb in Bishop until it was miserably hot. I fell head over heels in love with the area as soon as I arrived. It marked the beginning of a special time in my life. Time with myself, time to explore in every sense of the word's meaning; time to take pictures, meet people, read, get strong, and suck every drop of marrow from each day. It was bliss, but the injury made me leave.

I made the trip the "long way" to Yosemite and continued the journey with only a map and a few days supply of food. I had no expectations and lived each day for the day, not knowing where the roads would take me or where I would sleep. One of these paths brought a disposable camera to my possession. It had 12 exposures already taken on it when I found it, and this past Friday I finally took the last one. It is time to get it developed and see the treasures that have been stored away for months. I wish my life was still that concise and simplified, but I'm finding that it's okay to establish dependencies in relationships, places, and even things.