Tesla Hertz 2014

Tesla Hertz 2014

Frustration has hit me hard. The traffic last night and the stressful blood withdrawal I made this morning are partly to blame. But one of the main things is the fact that I’m just in taper madness mode. I did not really taper too much but it makes me feel better thinking I did.
The day before the tesla hertz trail run I did my usual thing before races. I did a shortened swim (5000) and had my traditional brown rice pasta among other stuff the night before. After getting everything ready, stressing out, having a couple of drinks( not in that order) I tried the best I could to get some sleep.
The forecast was rain. So upon waking up later than normally for a race, I walked outside to determine what I wanted to do. That’s what I usually do if I have a ride scheduled in order to see if it would be better to switch the workout. But the rain wasn’t too bad and also it doesn’t matter with running. Playing in the rain is fun except when your feet are soaked and you lose toenails.
So after eating the usual breakfast it was off to the waldbaums parking lot to get situated and get the machine coffee I always do before this run. I talked to a couple of people, read a book and hung out until the race started. Before the race was about to start me and some of the other runners I knew from last year stood under a tent chatting and trying to stay dry and warm.
We were instructed to run the counterclockwise loop and follow the blue foot trail to the aid station and the red foot trail back to the start/ finish line. All along the route there was pink ribbons to help verify you are still on the right path. At some points it looked like a breast cancer advocate spider ran around the woods and dumped pink thread everywhere. This was also the first time I just wore a regular hat backwards during the run. I wore my Devils hat as opposed to my usual running hats. Trail running is much more layer back and that’s why it is so much better. I usual go for a bandana but I wanted to show I have a little devil inside. The weird thing was the fact that at first the hat felt heavy from all the rain getting soaked in it. As I continued I got the weird flow state and knew I was wearing the hat but it felt like it was part of me. Hard to really explain and sounds crazy, that is why I love to run.
As with last year I loved the rest stop. The biker guy with the sleeve tattoos was maning it again. He was even there the next day when I road ghost along my usual Sunday route. Probably wasn’t good to go as long as I did after a race but I can’t help myself, love the bike.
On the way back to the start/finish line I forgot about the one and only big hill. It was a nice surprise considering that the course is florida flat for the most part. I got back to the start with my right knee talking to me, not too bad but it was talking. Despite having low energy And the nagging knee probably from a mix of not really running to much I Decided to try one more loop.
Upon coming to the aid station again I was in pain. On my way there I was even thinking of seeing if I could get shuffled back to the start. It’s amazing what some sugar and Advil will do for you. I really liked the HEED drink they had as well as the hammer gels. They both seemed to work really well and can’t wait to try them in training when I’m stronger and not injured. As I’m writing this I’m suffering from a left knee injury I got the Monday after the race. The right one healed up or moved to the left knee. It probably wasn’t the smartest thing to go for a bike ride the day after the race but I wanted to see how the race was progressing the next day.
So after I finished the two loops I bailed out, said my good byes, and made hast for the local red mango as a post run victory sundae.
Surprisingly I didn’t even finish it. I think it was all the junk I had to carry me through the run but I wanted to reward myself anyways. The real reward was when I got home. I got settled, ate some healthy stuff, took a shower and took the best one hour nap I ever had. These after race naps are the best reward for all the effort you put in. While I was in my endorphin induced coma I kept visualizing the downhill parts of the trail run. My leg even twitched a bunch and it felt like I was still running. Such a great feeling of peace.
The rest of the day from what I remember was just as good. Felt peaceful all day. Played some destiny I think. It was a while ago and I just remember having the endorphin high with the occasional post race depression due to finishing a big task and not having it on the agenda anymore. I still had my owl beer which is a traditional must after a running race. All in all a great day except the lingering left knee now runner injury. Can’t wait to do it next year and hopefully finish.
“it’s about making the time to do your ART”
– Barton

Hamptons half 2014

There is meaning in even the smallest things. You make what meaning is in your own life.
For me running is a way to enhance all the other aspects of my life. You feel more alive due to the fact that you are using more of yourself. This included the heart, lungs, legs but most importantly the brain. Without the right mindset it would be impossible to enjoy running.
Putting one foot in front of the other is a simple yet complex thing. The complex thing is further enhanced when you are running with others as I choose to do every year. One of these traditional foot races I sign up for every year is the hamptons marathon.
So it all began when the angry alarm went off at 4:30 AM. My poor cat didn’t know what hit him given the fact that the race alarm I have is some loud, hard rock music to get me going before the race. Not that I need it. The night before I was rushing around getting everything ready so sleep didn’t come easy. I was excited of what the day would bring. I left the meeting early so I could try and get myself in order for tomorrow. I made my traditional brown rice pasta and tried to get all my racing stuff together. Basically I ate everything in sight, was anxious and wondered around my apartment like a chicken with its head cut off.
My mom was up even before I went to go get her. She was my ride which was very nice to have a company. The ride went smoothly…well not the actual ride. The xterra is a tank after all. Everything else went smoothly and we arrived early enough to park on the side street by the little Corner park, just like the year before.
After we got my race bib and shwag, my mom volunteered while I went back to the car to get ready physically and mentally. I always like to read a little before my races. Seems to help with the pre-race anxiety/excitement.
Before the real excitement actually started I wandered around and took in my surroundings. Best thing was that the crickets were chirping, I love the fall. This fall the crickets have been so loud and numerous which is a real pleasure the year.
So September 27, 2014 at 8 AM the race started. Nothing too out of the ordinary happened on the 13.1 miles. Too short for anything substantial to happen😉. I did the frequent marking of my territory like I always do. Blame it on too much coffee and water. The only real nutrition I took in was a vanilla gu around mile 7.5. Toward the end of the race the sun was out and it was getting hot. That was around mile 10 in which I also decided to kick it up little by little to the finish. I really wish I would have worn my heart rate monitor cause it has been a while since I ran with that much effort. Racing forces you to do that. It feels so good putting some effort into running. Hopefully I’ll get back into intervals on the track this winter without getting hurt. I have discovered I really love structure in my training. Track work and swimming laps are two types of workouts/play I really love cause there is structure to them. By structure I mean consistent and measurable. I’m a numbers guy so having set measurements is something I live by.
Speaking of numbers here are the stats from the race
Place: 352
Div Total: 42/110
Sex Total: 202/534
Number: 1914
Net time: 1:53:37 (8:40 pace)
Gun time: 1:54:39 (8:45 pace)

All in all it was a very great day. I did get a little dehydrated after my post race latte, but besides that all was good. Still got the post race depression which is a common thing with runners. Once it’s over the thing you looked forward too is no more. Guess this is why women have more than one kid. I forgot all the good chemicals running produces when you give it some effort.
One important thing that came to mind as the endorphins were flowing during the race was to shut up on being negative on yourself and ALLOW yourself to just be who you are. Everyone worries about what others think of them. Whereas the truth is that people are not looking at you as much as you think. They are more concerned and worried about how they look. So always be kind and compliment others (especially on their running shoes) and don’t forget to kick it up at the end.
“Peace and happiness is found near the ocean”
– Barton

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Nyc century 2014

NYC 2014

121 East Main Street Riverhead, NY 11901
Above is the address of the bike shop I went to before me and my mom went to Joe’s Crab Shack. I was looking to replace my questionable/ broken derailluer from a traditional bike ride I do every year. The New York City century tour.
The day started very similar to last year with me getting on the 3:45 train from Ronkonkoma to penn station. Had my coffee on the train while reading a Michael crition book about pirates. When we finally arrived at penn (me and my bike) I think I took 7th street or 8th street up to 110th where the race starts. Think it was 7th. After slapping the numbers on my helmet, camelback and also the bike itself alls that was left was to wait the 10 minutes or so for the race to start.
I got into the city riding grove like it was just yesterday. The weather was perfect for riding with the cool fall air. One of the greatest things about the fall besides the air being more breathable is the sound of the crickets in the mornings and also in the evenings. To me it just brings a sense of peace and it kind of reminds me of listening to myself breathing while I am swimming. Great ‘meditative’ state.

Riding this century, actually it is a little more than a century due to the the back and forth from penn to the start/finish. Regardless, riding for an extended period of time is always a joy. If movement equals happiness I am always on cloud nine when this race comes around every year. I actually beat my time from last year due to not stopping at the crappy last rest stop. That’s one thing that could be improved upon, the rest stops. I guess it’s the best it’s going to get but the line for the food and water is way to long. Kind of throws you out of your biking zone. Bathroom lines were way to long as well, no problem for me. It was nice to have hummus and pita bread at the second rest stop. As always in this ride I eat everything in sight usually crappy stuff. The over eating and junk/performance food, gels and fluids definitely helps with he stresses of New York City riding.
Going over the bridges is always a scary but exciting time. In particular the Brooklyn bridge where you can see the water while you are looking down. It’s one of those things where if you were told to do something you didn’t want to do, you wouldn’t do it. The riding on tight bridges and weaving in between cars occurs kind of without you being asked if you want to do it or not. Your just put in the moment and need to react. Thinking about it could be dangerous. Such is the case every year were I almost (and in some instances actually see) a disaster happen. Usually it is the riders fault due to his or her not being aware of the environment and surroundings. I guess that’s why I do it every year, to be in the moment and having to actually pay attention cause otherwise I could get really hurt.
It is also very eye opening to see the variety of people in the 5 borrows. From the rich to the poor. From the good to the bad. As well as a few crazies along the way, me being one of them. Passing through all the different people, places and attractions makes the ride go by in he blink of an eye. You also meet a lot of people riding. Everyone who enters shares the same interest, that of riding. I always strike up conversations with others around me, unless I’m at a low point. Those lows didn’t happen to me this year cause I fueled accordingly 🙂
Once I arrived at the start/finish line my ride still wasn’t over. I had to find my way back to penn after riding 100+ miles. But I had another point to reach that was a reward when I finally got to the train station. When I finally found my delirious happy self to the station I immediately got some frozen yogurt and loaded on the junk. I had plenty along the route but this yogurt is my special treat for staying alive and accomplishing my goal. All in all a great, exciting and challenging day. Can’t wait till next year.
-Barton
“just keep on moving forward”

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Swim

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When you think about spending hours in a pool or doing anything for an extended period of time, the thought can be tiresome. mindlessly swimming back and forth to some can seem a sadistic form of torture. Over time however, gradually you learn to accept and then love the time spent doing the activity.
The truth can be said with anything. The more you do something the more you can learn to like and accept it. It’s not always a good thing cause variety creates balance in our lives and is needed to be happy and productive.
I guess the problem can be that we get so used to doing something that we feel a part of it. I’m all for becoming absorbed and doing my best in what I’m doing. Doing the same thing over and over again can be boring at times. One thing I try to do if to be mindful that this feeling will pass and I will get through it and eventually start enjoying the activity or task again. “This to shall pass.” Is a great thought to keep in mind throughout life in all we do.
“I see you hill.”
– Barton

Do what your into.

There are different types of people just like there are different types of dogs. A good example is the difference between a greyhound and say a beagle. One is good at running fast were the other is good for hunting and sniffing things out. Both are happy being the dog they are and are content with that. We as humans are just the same way. We all have different body types, personalities, interests, and the list goes on and on. Sure we are a lot more diverse than dogs but who we are at the deepest level is always there.
I tend to love a lot of things. Even if I don’t like something at first I start to adapt and become content with it over time. But deep down I’m always going to be the same old dog, no matter what.
Just keep swimming
– Barton

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Week review

So to help me along with this whole journaling thing I am going to try to catalog the different topics I have a passion for. Some off the top of my head include; training, projects, random thoughts, video games, comics, and whatever else comes to mind in this blog endeavor of mine. I believe it will help me appreciate all the things I do each day. I’ll try to be very detailed so it may get a bit boring, but that’s why I’m doing it, for the details.
bike
So with all this single speed mountain biking I’ve been doing I have learned that I love tinkering. I think it just comes down to the fact that I love working with tools. project I discovered that yesterday when I destroyed a couch and took it out of the basement. While doing this I used a variety of tool which included; screwdriver, hammer, small sledge hammer, chisel, hand saw, bolt cutters. Probably should have used a crow bar as well. I really enjoyed the WORK. It actually felt like I was giving effort and so that’s why it was rewarding. I also threw out the treadmill that no one has used in forever. bike with the bike however it’s not about chaos but about order. Tinkering and trying to adjust everything can be frustrating, especially when your not exactly sure what to do.
Just got out on the pool (it’s a couple days later). Hard to find the time to finish these entry’s so I think I’m going to make them short and longer when I can. Rough swim. Way too much sugar this morning I think. Nothing really of note…brains still underwater.
-Barton

Recapturing the owl

We are all capable of amazing things. There is a catch though. The catch being we have to want to do it. For example just before this I was scarfing down some eggs, beets, guacamole, red peppers, and falafel drowning in hot sauce. Needless to say I was distracted by the food and not typing this. In order to be a writer, something I consider great and amazing, you can’t be distracted by the delicious food in front of you. My excuse is I just got out of the pool so food took priority. So good.
So what can we do to not get distracted and focus on all of our awesomeness. For one thing, it’s all about mindfulness and mental training. Visualizing who you want to be and decide to just do it. It will get hard no matter what your doing. That can be simply reading something that may not be interesting at first but if you stick with it and give forth the effort you will benefit. Maybe not from the boring information but you will benefit from the accomplishment.
“don’t lose focus”
– Barton

Create

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Besides swimming and other related, relevant lifestyle tidbits I have decided to include my biking endeavors and bike life as well. I’ll try to leave it with those two activities as the main thrust.
So to continue on I figured I would start by introducing REKEN. This is a 20″ hardtail mountain bike which has seen a number of different faces, or builds as I like to call them. This most recent one was concocted due to my renewed discovery and love of single speed mountain biking. There is no turning back now. I have done some single speeding in the past and got frustrated with this or that not working for some reason or another. This time I stuck with it and I’m so glad I did.
I started this endeavor due to the fact that I haven’t been able to run due to injury. I found that single speed mountain biking is a equal substitute. You have all the trails of trail running plus the added bonus of strengthening the quadriceps on standing and climbing the uphills.
The most important aspect of it is that it is SIMPLE. What I mean is there is no thinking about “what gear I need to be in” or “why do my derailluers keep changing gears on there own”. The only thing you need to do is pedal!
I’ve learned a lot more then I did about chainline, dropouts, tensioners, and magic gears, just to name a couple aspects of SS Mtbing. It’s the learning that I enjoyed as well. Maybe not at some of the frustration moments I had putting this or that together but in the end it was worth it.
-Barton-
Just keep pedaling

Morning

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One thing I have adapted myself to do is to wake up at five in the morning. Actually it is usually around 4:30 but I wait around till five unless I’m really anxious to get started with my training. Almost all my training whether it’s swimming, biking, running *, or a lift gets done in the morning. It gets me ready for the day. It’s also good cause my brain doesn’t have time to argue with me saying to skip it and just stay in bed. I literally can’t stay in bed. I have been waking up and training so long that it is engrained and I don’t think I just do it. Like all habits it took time to develop this. It’s good cause I am usually refreshed in the mornings. Well, once I have a cup or two of coffee with my usual other concoctions. Jumping in the water at these early hours of the morning use to be tough and they still are. I do it cause I know I’ll benefit from it and feel great once I get going. If I don’t feel on par that day I just do it anyway and feel good having done the goal.
-Barton
*when not injured