Thursday Track Report: Bwana Hates Winter!

January 13, 2011

This is the winter of Bwana's discontent. Actually, they all are. Bwana hates winter. But he soldiers on. And Jim Myers, John Domico, Judd Michael, Lance Bland, George Lesieutre, Randy Jepson, John Sheakoski, Bob Cornwall, Tom Hilands, Mark Traband, Dana Todd, Kirk Rager, Mike Weyandt, Jon Oatley, Mark Lee, John Wilcock, Kim Nelson, Rob Peterson, Matt Degges, Andy Maguire, Rich Harter, and another feller whose name escapes Bwana kept Bwana company at the track today. (Joel Niemann showed up late, but also squeezed in a workout.)

What's to say? Several people are doing Spring Marathon prep. They were trapped in their own private hell of circling endlessly in the dry indoor air. Others are getting ready for the Indoor Miles. Their circles had ends, but they were breathing harder in the dry indoor air, all to get ready to breath REALLY hard in the dry indoor air. It all gets so depressing. But, it's winter! Don't be SAD. Coffee up! Sit under a sun lamp! Spring is just around the corner, right after February, the longest month of the year!

Bwana heard remarks about the dearth of females at the track lately. Well, two of our favorite gal pals have big new responsibilities, and a couple of others are stuck in rehab hell. But Bwana still hasn't figured out what's stopping Julie G and Janet J from popping in. Then there are the male shirkers and sometime lurkers. Cali? Cunfer? Luna? C'mon fellers. Your talents are receding, along with other things!

Thursday Track Crew: Be It Resolved...

January 6, 2011

There must have been a bout of heavy resolution making last weekend, because Track attendance was pretty high for a Winter's day. Jim Myers, John Domico, Lance Bland, Jim Moore, Bob Cornwall, Costas Maranas, Jon Oatley, Meira Minard, John Sheakoski, Esther Prins, Rob Peterson, Mark Hilliard, Jerry Steffy, Judd Michael, Dana Todd, Kirk Rager, Rich Harter, newcomer Andy Maguire, Michael Goldfine, Miles Smith, "Tara Incognita", and Marty Mazur all showed up at the MSF.

People are prepping for the Indoor Mile Series, which always follows quickly on the heals of Christmas. The first race is on Saturday morning. Bwana gave his favorite Indoor Mile tune-up workout. A flat-topped pyramid: 3-4-4-3 laps in the outside lane with generous rest between. The 3s and 4s bracket the half-mile distance. The trick is to  run your first 3 lapper at just about mile race pace. Then do each of your 4s at a slightly faster (if you can) pace. Top it off with a 3 as hard as you can go with the energy you have left. The workout is designed to program your goal pace into your legs, and to give you a pretty good pre-race workout as well.

Meira Minard is taking a sabbatical from her Hill Queen duties and made a final  appearance with the lunchtime crew. She'll be student teaching in Bellefonte until May. But she hopes to see us on weekend runs. She won't be seeing us at races, however, unless she looks over her shoulder. She needs to win a couple more this year than last to finally secure the NVRC Race Series crown! Good luck to Meira in both of her pursuits. We still need a substitute Hill Queen...

The rest of you who aren't yet making good on your resolutions had better get to it! Bwana starts getting tough and cranky again next week!

Thursday Track Crew: Nursing A Track Hangover

December 2, 2010

We went from hurricane season to winter overnight. It was cold, with a coating of snow on the muddy ground as John and Rebecca Domico, Lance Bland, Jim Moore, Costas Maranas, Esther Prins, Michael Goldfine, Jon Oatley, Matt Degges, newcomer Dave Aggler, Adam Smith, Mark Lee, Ron Cunfer, Lee Culver, Rob Peterson, and Marty Mazur headed for the track.

John Domico brought his nurse-in-training daughter for a workout. Rebecca must be going into geriatric sports orthopedics. She can't get her degree soon enough as far as I'm concerned. Our track workouts are getting to be more a litany of complaints, with several of our regulars (Minard, Davis, Michael) out with newly-aggravated injuries. Bwana himself is only tenuously himself, after nearly 6 months of butt therapy, which he won't go into details about. Bwana flexed his glutes and had the Crew do NX3X300 to start immunizing them from Track Hack. They'll appreciated the pre-sandblasted lungs come mid-February.

So where has Cali been lately? And Cornwall? Is he permanently camped out at Otto's now that their new place is open? Luna should be back in town soon. We don't want him to think the Thursday Track Crew has all retired to a nursing home.

Speaking of nursing, soon we'll all be nursing egg nogs and hot toddies, and afterward, hangovers. Bwana has the cure for that: he has started the ball rolling on the 2011 Indoor Mile Series. More on that later. But to start the old year out the door in the right way, NEXT WEEK will be our Jingle Bell Jog. Yes. You heard that right. It's a week early this year. Bwana has a commitment the following Thursday, and the Thursday after that is a University Holiday: December 23, St. Graham's Day.

Thursday Track Crew: Early Egg Nog

December 9, 2010

It's hard to believe another year has gone by! Lot's of water over the dam, most of which has gone down the spillway and into that water wheel that goes round and round, much as we do every Thursday. Well, THIS Thursday, it was time for the annual Jingle Bell Track Workout. A week earlier than usual, but Christmassy all the same. John Domico, Tom Cali, Martha Nelson, Tara Murray, Paula Jech, George Lesieutre, Ken Davis, Dana Todd, John, Pringle, Mike Weyandt, Andrew Webb, John Sheakoski, Rob Peterson, Kevin Becker, Michael Goldfine, Dave DeGroote, Adam Smith, Mike Renz, and Bwanita Cherchez La Femme were be-costumed and jingling as they headed for the track. Bwanita had flown in all the way in from a Lemur Obedience Workshop in Madagascar. Next year, be looking for some live neckware on Bwanita!

It was crisp and sunny as the Crew left Rec Hall and headed for the Track where they did their traditional "Look Back" on 2010 (1 lap running backwards), then unwound their legs by "Looking Forward" to 2011. After that, they headed through downtown to the astonishment of the remaining students and some Holiday shoppers. After busting up Rapid Transit Sports, they ran to the top of the Beaver Avenue parking deck and back down. A quick stop at Margarita's Pizza on Beaver, and then a fast run up Burrowe's Avenue to Rec Hall juggling four steaming pies. The Crew dropped a couple of them off at the equipment room for our friends there to enjoy, then amused the people in the warmup area by inhaling the other two!

Bwana took one of his rare days off of Track today. Unfortunately, he'll be off next week as well. Office party! And the University is closed the following Thursday. I'm sure the Indoor Track will be open until the 22nd. And the outdoor track is always open! Maybe I'll see you there. If not, have a safe and merry Christmas, and a happy and prosperous New Year!


Bwanita and Crew on the Beaver Street Deck

Thursday Track Report: A Lot To Get Ready For

November 18, 2010

It was drab, cool, and breezy, really looking like Fall, as Jim Myers, Lance Bland, Jim Moore, Ken Davis, Greg Dillon, George Lesieutre, Ron Cunfer, Mike Weyendt, Paula Jech, Michael Goldfine, Jon Oatley, Mike Renz, John Ake, Rich Harter, Adam Smith, Matt Degges, and Marty Mazur headed for the outdoor track. Tom Cali, John Domico, and Costas Maranas didn't want to trip over a wind-swept leaf, so they hit the indoor track.

There are only a few more track workouts left in 2010. And Bwana was worried that people were really sliding into the season of indulgence too soon, the way Track attendance has been lately. But there was a good turnout today. Twenty runners, including a couple of people just off of marathons. Paula Jech "survived" the hilly Athens Marathon, along with her husband Tom. And Mike Renz decided to run Harrisburg despite having a huge bite taken out of his training by a bout of tendinitis. He did better than survive, hanging in for a sub-4 finish. And it's a good thing attendance was up! There's still a lot to get ready for in the final days of this year's running calendar!

Considering the cold breezes, Bwana decided to give out a "pace workout", 3X1000. That's a good workout for Half-Marathon training. (Though by now, people seriously training for our Half should be doing 6X1000!) But it should also help you hold on during the hilly Give 'Em Five Run in Bellefonte this weekend. Bwana did his own thing again, running his first timed sub-7 mile since his hamstring went bad in June.

There's still some time to get in training for the last 2 NVRC Race Series races of the year (and the first one of 2011). Tara's Give 'Em Five Run promises to be a challenge. The Half, in 2 weeks from Sunday, is *always* a challenge. And you'll want to be ready for "next year's" first race, the First Night Resolution Run, on New Year's Eve!