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Archive for June, 2009

30
Jun

Another Run Update

9.4 TrainingI haven’t done a long run in two weeks.  It’s really been bothering me.  I know I am way ahead of schedule in milage in order to be ready to run the marathon in December, however, when I set goals for myself it’s not really something I like to stray from.  Sometimes I realize I’m being a little militant with myself and cut myself a break.  The last two weeks I just haven’t been motivated to do my long run.  I wish I had a good reason.  My last long run (7 Miles) wasn’t that hard and actually went really smooth.  So I’m unsure what the hesitance was other than the fact that I didn’t want to.  None-the-less I missed my 8 mile run last week.  Which really didn’t bother me.  I figured one week was not a big deal since I am way ahead of any training schedule I’ve looked at online.  But then last weekend came and went and I didn’t do it again.  I have been running.  Just not more than 4 miles.  So yesterday I decided that instead of going to the gym this morning I’d get up early and run my 8 mile run.

Once I hit the road I was feeling good physically.  My first mile actually wasn’t as bad as it normally is.  I could tell I was running slow but since I haven’t run a long run in two weeks I figured slow and steady would get me to finish.  I’d say around mile 6 I was feeling really good and started thinking about trying to do 9 miles instead.  In the back of my head I knew I still had two miles to go before I hit the eight and I may just have been getting over ambitious.  So I kept thinking about it until I got to the point where I had to decide to go home and call it good at 8 or go for the 9.  Since I didn’t measure the extra mile out before my run I had to guess what would be a mile I didn’t want to get home and be just shy of 9 so I made sure to run down a couple extra courts.  I figured it was going to be over but I’d rather that happened than being less than what I wanted to do.  After getting home I mapped it out and it came up to 9.4 miles, which works out to about 11.5 min miles.  So like I said I knew I was running slow but all in all 1:48 mins to run 9.4 miles isn’t bad.  I know another run I did recently I was at 8.5 min miles for 3 miles.  I’m not sure what I need to do to get my distance speed faster.  In my head I’m thinking I can start working on speeding up once I get the distance closer to the marathon distance.

23
Jun

Pidgin: IM

I can’t remember when the last time I rambled on about using Pidgin for IM.  However today I have yet another reason why I like it.  First what is Pidgin? Pidgin is an instant messenger client that allows you to run multiple instant messenger accounts from one program.  So for instance I can have one instant messenger program running (Pidgin) and be logged into Google-talk, Msn, Yahoo, and Aim.  This is much cleaner than running several IM clients.  Originally each service (Msn, Yahoo, etc.) only ran on thier own program.  So if you had friends on different networks you had to run several programs.  I ran into pidgin when I was using Linux and later looked for a Windows version.  Now-a-days some of the big IM clients like Yahoo and MSN will run a few of the other networks but not all of them.  So hence the need for programs like Pidgin and Trillian.  I used Trillian for a long time and it is just as good as Pidgin.  I honestly started using Pidgin instead just so I could use the same client on my Linux machines as on my Windows ones.

So the cool thing that I ran into today is that Pidgin has a plug-in that allows you to be logged into the Facebook chat.   Prior to this I would just leave one tab on my web browser open to Facebook and then if someone IM’d me I’d hear the pop sound.  However the pop sound on the Facebook chat is annoying when you are IM’ing back and forth.  There is a setting to turn it off but I haven’t had a lot of luck with it working.  Now I can just use my Pidgin instead.  The cool thing about the add in is that it also displays when people post/reply to things I’ve posted on so I don’t have to go back and check to see if anyone has responded.  Instead it notifies me.  I know you could just use the email notifications to get alerts on that stuff but honestly I don’t like getting that much useless email.  There are also plugins for the MySpace and Twitter social networking sites.

23
Jun

Satellite Radio vs Pandora

pandoraOn the way to work this morning I came to the conclusion that paying for a Smart phone that has an unlimited data plan and the ability to use a Pandora radio app is way better than paying for Satellite Radio.  I will start out by saying if you use your Satellite Radio to listen to a particular talk show then my point is moot.  However if you have satellite radio so you can listen to your favorite music and not have to hear commercials or some dj giving you his opinion then Pandora is the way to go.

Here is how I figure Pandora is better.

1. Pandora is free.

2. I can listen to my favorite bands on Pandora and not the ones I don’t like.

3. My station can be one type of music just like satellite or it can combine multiple genres so I have a “mix radio station”.

4. My cell signal doesn’t drop like the satellite does when in wooded areas, tunnels, my garage, etc.

5. I can take my music (pandora) with me to the gym, mt. biking, on my motorcycle, running, etc.,  and listen to it without carrying another piece of equipment other than my phone.

6. I can listen to Pandora in my car through my phone’s bluetooth and a handsfree device like the Motorola T505 that broadcasts my music through my stereo.

I’m sure there are more reasons that I will think of later but for now that’s all I feel like typing.  🙂

18
Jun

iPhone Internet Tethering!!!

Today I got a link to a site from a friend that explains how to use your iPhone’s internet connection on your computer.  For those of you that aren’t super g33ky and technical that is called “Tethering”.   There are a lot of phones that have this capability but At&t doesn’t usually allow it without paying extra.  And here comes the beauty of the internet: Click here for Free Tethering.  This only works on the new iPhone software version 3.0 that was released yesterday.  You can get that update from iTunes.

Just go to http://help.benm.at (on your iPhone with the new 3.0 software) and click download on the Mobileconfigs.  Chose At&t and it downloads the patch.  You just need to go into your network settings under General and turn on internet tethering.  I didn’t test using it over bluetooth, but did plug my phone into my laptop and surf the net.  So it works!  Just don’t go crazy with your data usuage it may alert At&t if you go from barely using the internet to downloaded movies from torrents or newsgroups.

The way I see it I can use my laptop at conferneces now instead of just surfing on my iPhone.  Or I have the ability to get into our work network and fix problems anywhere I have cell signal.  Which is something I gave up going to the iPhone from a windows mobile phone that could run terminal services.

16
Jun

7 Down 19 to go…

amphipodThe last long run I went on I didn’t take any water.  It was over 90 degrees and I really came to the conclusion that I made a big mistake.  Fortunately there were some resources along the way to help me from passing out.  None-the-less I talked to my friend who runs 50 mile races and asked him how he carries his water.  He told me that he uses the bottles that just wrap around your hands.  At first I was thinking that they would get heavy and that would really suck.  I remembered how bad the runs with our M16 in the Army made my arms feel like they were going to fall off.   A few seconds later I came to the conclusion that two water bottles don’t weigh seven pounds and the worst thing that will happen from me carrying them is I’ll get stronger.  So off to REI I went and picked up two of these bottles that I have pictured here.  They are called Amphipods and out of the different ones I looked at they looked like they let your hand sit in a pretty natural position. 

So this morning I popped my Creatine, ate a yogurt, and drank some water to prepare for my run.  I’ve been adding 1 mile every week.  So I was supposed to do 7 for my long run this week.  I talked my retarded and lazy lab (Chase) into getting out from under the bed to go with me and we walked out the front door ready to tackle this run.  As usual the first mile sucks.  It takes a little for my legs to warm up so I’m usually not to excited the first mile.  Anyways, around mile three I was topping this hill that burns the legs pretty good but was feeling strong.  Last week at mile four I was starting to feel it.  This week I rounded mile four singing the lyrics to the songs that were playing out loud.  Mile five came and went.  I crested that same hill from mile 3 on my way back and was feeling good.  I remembered finishing 6 miles last week in that heat and feeling like I was gonna die.  By this point I could feel my right foot and ankle starting to tighten up.  I almost twisted my ankle on a rock earlier and I think that was catching up with me.  Either way I came into mile seven pretty strong.  I think I probably picked up my pace a little at this point.  I finished the entire run in 1 hour 20 mins. and 28 seconds.  That means I was running at about a 11 and 1/2 min mile.  On one hand I’m not too excited about that.  On the other hand I am.  I know when I run at work and on the treadmill I run a lot faster.   However work and the treadmill is pretty flat.  Running at home is all trail running on uneven and rocky surfaces with a lot of elevation gain and loss.  I know going up some of the steep ass hills around my house tax me.  I’m curious what I can run 5 or 6 in at work to compare it against.  At this point I still have around 6 months of training to go until the marathon and in a few more weeks will already be running a half.

11
Jun

Howcast.com

So I was watching this iPhone add and they use a app called Howcast.  So I went to thier site and found some information that is much more useful then knowing if you are standing in Poison Ivy like the apple commercial.  Check this out:

10
Jun

This shouldn’t be a suprise

speedingticket

8
Jun

10k Day

6milerunToday I ran my first 10k or 6 miles for those of us who live in the United States.  I never really understand why they call them 5k or 10k when we all know what miles are.  America either needs to adopt the metric system or start calling things what they really are….3 mile and 6 mile runs.  LOL, anyways.  It is so much easier running in Davis (where I work) compared to running at home on the trails.  I like the trails better because it’s nicer scenery, however there is so much elevation gain that it really sucks.  It’s really flat in Davis which makes keeping a pace easy.  It’s funny how you are constantly talking yourself into not stopping when you are running.  I remember my first 2 or 3 today I was feeling really good.  However by the last one I was seriously coming up with ideas of why I needed to stop.  Granted it was 92 degrees out and I didn’t take water.  I did get a little water because they had a water station on the golf course at on of the tee boxes I ran by.  It was right about where my 2 mile marker is on the map.  They had little dixie type cups so I pounded to on the way out, and 3 on the way back.  I’m really going to have to carry a camelback next time.  Either way I just about called it good about 5 miles in.  I was so hot and I had another 2 climbs to muscle through to get home and my calves where killing.  I thought to myself I could stop at the water fountain at the baseball fields and get some water and it would only be about a half mile less then what I initialled planned on.  In my head I was thinking, c’mon man what’s more important finishing this run or passing out from heat exhaustion.  Right when I got to the point where I either climb this big hill or turn to the flat path to the baseball fields I talked myself into continueing.  I’m stoked because I got home and measued it out on-line and it was right at 6 miles.   I was assuming I’d be at about 6 so I was right on target.  If I would have stopped I would have felt bad after the fact.  I’m glad I stayed determined.  So 6 miles down….20 to go.

8
Jun

New iPhone 3Gs

nikeplusToday Apple released all the info about the new iPhone 3Gs. I’m pretty stoked about the copy and paste, pictures in mms, and the video capabilities. My iPhone 3G got some water damage and I’ve been waiting for the new one to be released before I went in to get a new one. We’ll see how it all pans out.

I also looked up Hulu iPhone Apps and found this article that says it’s coming soon and it’s “BADASS!”  That will be a great app to have. 

I also noticed that the new phone has support for Nike Plus which can track your milage, times, and calories burned.  That’s pretty cool too!  It all links up to your iPhone by purchasing a $20 wireless part.  Sounds like a much cheaper alternative to buying a $200 Garmin Forerunner.

4
Jun

Microsoft’s Project Natal: Amazing!!!

Project NatalI want to start this out letting everyone know I don’t even own an Xbox.  Honestly I’ve always prefered the more cartoony type games of Nintendo over the super realistic ones on game consoles.  When I did get into more realistic grafics it was on PC FPS’s (First Person Shooter).  I haven’t been much of a gamer in the last few years other than the occasional 15 mins or so with my son.  When we decided to buy a game console I opted for the wii since it encoraged people to get off thier asses and burn some calories while having fun.  I also liked that there were more titles that weren’t about blood and guts for my children to play.

When I looked at a lot of the features that the Xbox has I always thought to myself I have a media center pc so I really don’t need that.  I think Microsoft just stepped up the game to the point that Nintendo is really going to have to do their homework.  If you watch this video you will get a sneak preveiw of the new face, voice, body recognition program they are going to be releasing that will completely change the gaming world.  You can play all these games with no controllers at all.  It also has a speech recognition portion that will allow you to seamlessly talk with the characters in the game.  The video I’m posting is one that shows you a bunch of different games in one video but if you search Youtube for “Project Natal” there are more in depth explanations from the E3 conference.  Enjoy!