The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-315 – Gary Allen and I talk running


(Audio: link)






garyallenLink epi4315.mp3


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Intro Bumper:


Hey there! This is Chris your steward for today’s ride along the colorful roadway of endurance sport. Practically, this makes for three podcasts in three weeks for you from the RunRunLive headquarters (Located in a dank cave in Western Pennsyvania that at one point in its history housed bandits, velociraptors and coal miners), just kidding, I’m actually in my home office.  I did have a trip to Denver, but it got canceled.


Episodes 4-313, 4-314 & 4-315 should be in your inbox, slightly out of order, due to a disruption in the space-time-chance-&-luck continuum.


mayflower-smallI seem to remember closing Episode 4-315 with the note that I intended to run a ½ marathon in Plymouth.  That would be two weeks ago now, and I did indeed run it.  First actual race for me since the heart procedure so my main goal was, as is my practice now, not to die and have fun.


My top concern was that I might pull something or otherwise hurt myself, given that I have not been doing much road work since Boston.


Coming off of Boston having run 8:30’s I figured that something in that range would be easy enough.  On the top end, if I felt good, sub-8’s would not displease the running gods.


I told coach to NOT taper me for the race, just treat it like a long tempo run.  I kept a nice training load right up to a bike and hard swim workout the day before.


A bunch of us from my club got up and drove down in the morning.  Brian had looked at the course map and said the first half was flat-to-down-hill, with big, long hill at mile 6 and then rolling hills to the end.


This was a first year race, but there were close to 2,000 runners.  The first mile was a bit jammed up, but I broke free and was feeling good enough spinning out the downs and flats, going a bit too fast, like I am wont to do.


I had my Garmin on but wasn’t looking at it, just running, chatting up the pretty girls, thanking the volunteers and having fun.  Looking at the data, those first 5 miles were in the 7:20 range, and that’s a bit fast (right now) with no taper, no training and a wonky heart.  I knew it was non-sustainable going into the hills.  My Heart rate was good – nice zone 4-5 effort but no flipping out into the 180-190 Afib range.


There was a water stop at mile 6 with porta-potties, so I stopped to have a rest, and reset my pace a bit.


There was a mile-plus hill from Mile 6, through the 10k and mile 7.  And it turns out this wasn’t the only one.  What Brian had called ‘rolling hills’ was a set of long steep hills over the last 10k that must have really beat up the back of the packers.


I just geared down and worked the hills, giving back some time but not suffering too much.  My legs weren’t all that peppy from the lack of taper.  I came in, according to the timing chip right on 8 minute miles, and looking at the data, my HR stayed in bounds for the most part, so I’m going to call that a win.


I mean, I could worry myself by remembering that I was trying to break a 1:30 ½ and ran a 3:23 at Boston 4 year’s ago, but that’s another season.  I feel like I’ die for a good run now, pun intended.


We’re done with the ‘happy-see-the warm-sun’ part of summer up here and into the ‘hot-sticky-horsefly-infested’ part of summer.  I was down in Atlanta last week when they were having a mini heat wave.  I got up in the morning to run and it was awful.  There was no oxygen in the air and I ended up coming back to the hotel soaked like I had been swimming.


Which is a pain in the butt, because then I had to pack up and get to work.  First, what you have to do is rinse out your wet stuff in the sink to remove some of the toxic man juice.  Then you roll them up in a couple towels and walk on them.  Then you put them in a plastic bag and pack them.


This worked ok except my Hokas were sweat soaked too.  I put them in a plastic bag and packed them but forgot about them until Tuesday this week and that was a horrible thing to have to put on those still-wet-festering shoes to go for a run. Ewwwww.


Then, after that Tuesday run I was soaked again, even though I exercised my rule of thumb that you can run shirtless under two conditions, 1) you have an attractive body or 2) you’re over 50.  When I got home I put those clothes directly into the washing machine, as a form of hazmat isolation.  But I didn’t run it because I wanted to wait until the morning.


My daughter decides to do some laundry.  She finds the wet clothes in the washing machine and decides that they must have been washed and puts them in the dryer!


Domestic adventures…




Today we have an interview with Gary Allen who we have talked to before in version one or two of the podcast many years ago.  Gary is the race director of the Mount Desert Island Marathon.  But, more relevant is that Gray is a bit of a historian for the local marathon scene having been involved at a near-elite level for many years, and still involved.


I’m hoping it come off as two old guys talking passionately about their sport, not two old guys bitching at the kids to get off their lawn!


In Section one I will continue my series of how to start running from scratch with a piece on how to build your support team that you’ll need as you progress.


In section two I’ll pull some nuggets from the book I read last week called “Happy is the new Healthy, 31 ways to relax and enjoy life now!”



I had a person I was interviewing ask me a question recently.  You know how it goes in an interview, where at the end I smile and say “Do you have any questions for me?”


They asked “Are you happy?”  I think the question was actually are you happy in your choice to work for this company?  Are you happy at the company?


I answered the question the way it was asked.  I said, “Well, first of all, I’m happy because I choose to be happy.  My happiness has nothing to do with where I work or who I work for.:”


Of course your environment does influence your emotions.  I get pissed off at work situations.  I get blind-sided by irrational people.  I have to deal with idiocy on the same scale as everyone else.


But, I try to remember that those are environmental things and really only effect my happiness if I let them.


On with the show!


Section one - Running Tips


newrunnerBuilding a support network -


Voices of reason – the interviews


Gary Allen – Race Director of the Mount Desert Island Marathon


Gary Allen - Team Run MDI

founder & race director


gary at runmdi dot org

Mount Desert Island Marathon • Half • Relay


"Get Real Maine: Run MDI"


The Mount Desert Island Marathon is the premier event of host running club Crow Athletics




The exact origins of Crow Athletics are not that difficult to trace. In the early 1990's a group of Mount Desert Island runners were heading to the now extinct Boston Primer, a 15 mile road race held in Readfield, ME. As they were traveling down I-95 heading south (in a Buick station wagon as big as a house) the car full of runners suddenly thought that running as a team might be fun. The various names thrown out for selection (most of which are not fit to print) ranged from the utterly ridiculous to generic and much over used terms such as roadrunners, striders, racing team, track club and so forth. By the time the crew drove through Newport, (which is incidentally 26 miles from Bangor) someone pointed out how knarly the crows are that line the highway eating dead things that we all seem to run over in our big Buicks. After passing another group of blackbirds that literally wouldn't get out of the road (even with a ton of Detroit's best iron heading for them), the team name for our day of racing at Readfield was born. "Road Crows". We won the team division and the team name was used loosely over the next decade.


Moving all the way forward to winter 2001-2002 another group of Mount Desert Island runners decided our island needed an organized running club. Again, many potential names were proposed and thrown out (most again, not fit to print -- why do runners think up such sick stuff?) Gary Allen, who was in attendance on the Readfield trip told the story of the original "Road Crows", and Crow Athletics as we know it today, was formed.


Our club has since slowly and steadily grown into one of the most forward thinking, fun oriented, outrageous running clubs in the universe! We love to point out to anyone who asks, 'Why crow?', that we runners (like crows) won't get out of the road, we're afraid of nothing, we are found in every state and nearly every corner of the world, and we are impervious to the weather.


Our members are of all abilities and hail from all over the US, Canada, and beyond. Some are among the best runners on the roads, while others run purely for fun! Our namesake mascot has even appeared as a tattoo on several Lifetime Members! We are a happy-healthyrecognized not for profit organization and annual membership dues (only $10 bucks) helps us to further our club and mission.


PS - Roadkill is a friendly little term we like to use in describing what we like to do to our race competition! CAW! CAW! CAW!


Section Two – Life Lessons


Book sample – Happy is the new healthy -




Ok my friends that’s it – the terminus of Episode 4-315of the RunRunLive podcast.  Those who arrive, survive.


One quick technical note:  At one point when I created a new version of RunRunLive a second podcast feed got added to iTunes.  If you search on ITunes for RunRunLive, two shows will pop up.  I’m going to ask Apple to eliminate one of them.  So if you find RRL-Feedthat the podcast disappears or you aren’t getting the fortnightly updates, go to iTunes and search again and subscribe to the other feed.


This is the correct iTunes Feed Link2


I bought new mountain bike for my daughter and last Sunday we went out for a ride.  I know all the trails around my house for miles and decided to take one that cuts behind the local ski hill.  It’s old farm road in the woods that runs behind one of the tubing hills.


I’m flying down this hill and I look up and there’s a rope across the trail about 3 feet of the ground.  I do some split second calculus and decide to lay the bike down and try to slide under it.  My intentions did not translate well and I bounced my noggin off the trail.


IMG_3213I had no idea where I was for a few minutes.  I gave myself a nice concussion.  Turns out I broke my helmet too.  I stopped taking the blood thinners and took it easy but I had a headache for a couple days.


It seems that they are running some sort of trial race over in the trails behind the ski area and had roped off the course.  I started to get a lot of comments on the social media that maybe I should stay out of the trails.  But, you can’t run scared.  You can’t live scared. You take the precautions you can, you wear a helmet and you don’t do anything stupid, but you can’t hide under a rock.


Remember, I’m looking for help with my Hood to Coast run the end of August.  I’m running to support Cancer research, because cancer sucks.  I’ll tell you what I’ll do.  I got a nice Team Hoyt running jacket from the Hoyts.  It’s a large.  It’s still in the wrapper.  Factory sealed. Pristine.


Biggest donation, let’s say $50,  in the next 30 days gets the jacket.


hoytjacketSupport my Hood-to-Coast Relay for Cancer Research -


I’ve got a great trip planned.  I’m going to fly into Rapid City, SD and drive west over the divide to Portland.  I’ve got the flights and hotels booked.  It’s going to be a hoot.  I’m taking my wife with me to give her something to complain about.  Anyone live along that route want to catch a run or have dinner or coffee let me know.


You folks remember Bruce Van Horn from a couple episodes back?  He just launched a new book called ‘Worry no More’ that he’s offering pre-release on the Kindle for 99ø if you like his stuff. amazon link for Bruce's new book


I’m training away and my next race is the Olympic Distance Triathlon up in Winchendon.  I feel pretty good about it.  I’ve gotten a couple swims in the open water of over a mile and as long as they let me wear my wetsuit I’ll be golden.


I bought this wetsuit a couple years ago when I was entertaining doing an ironman.  I hadn’t really used it much because my foot healed and I switched back to marathon racing.  I’m using it now in the open water and oh my goodness it is like having the swim cheat code.  It hold you in a nice balanced position so you can swim straight and easy without any struggle at all.  Wonderful technology.


After that I haven’t signed up yet, but I’m leaning towards riding the Hampshire 100 again.  I have to do some work on my 29er and learn how not to crash so much – but It’s a good challenge and my bike legs are coming back.


The one race I’m realwapackly looking forward to is the Wapack Trail Race on Sept 6th.  This is one of my favorite races.  It’s a hard race.  18 miles of mountain, technical trails.  Not for the 5K crowd.  But if you can run a marathon, you can run the Wapack and you will not find many other races like this one.  Consider it. Try something new.  Have an adventure.  Come run the Mountains with me.


I’ve got two interviews recorded for the next two shows.  One is with Matt, from Manchester England who created a graphic novel around the Steve Prefontaine story and the other is with Tim who used my MarathonBQ plan this spring to qualify for Boston.



Buddy-2015Buddy is sitting in the front yard barking at me through the door as I write this.  He wants me to come outside and play.  He’s old now and his hips bother him.  I don’t take him on long runs or on the road but we still get out in the woods for shorter stuff.


He loves it.  He loves to explore the woods and sniff everything and wallow in the mud holes even if it’s only 2-3 miles.  He’s been a good running partner and a good friend over the last decade.  I’m going to miss him when he’s gone.  It’s going to be hard to celebrate the big part he played in my life without feeling the loss, and the empty space he leaves.


I remember the time in he and I and Brian did a practice run of the Wapack. 20+ miles in the mountains and we had so much fun.  I can picture the way he used to fly through the air to catch a Frisbee.


I’m going to go take him for a walk now.  Because he’s my brother and he deserves the moment no matter how busy I am.


And as you’re walking your dog, I’ll see you out there.


Closing comments


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Direct download: epi4315.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 9:51am EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-313 – Jens takes on the internet startup

“The lost Episode”

(Audio: link) [audio:]

Link epi4313.mp3

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Intro Bumper:

Hello and welcome to episode 4-313 of the RunRunLive podcast.  It’s a beautiful day and I feel very lucky with all the gifts I’ve been blessed with.  

Part of the blessing is all of you, the people I’ve befriended over the years doing this show.  My life is so much richer for it.  So, thank you.  

I got to see one of my online friends this week.  I was out in San Diego and I originally planned to hop the redeye back but decided to stay over instead.  And ZenRunner drove out meet me.  We went for a run together, had a quick supper and a great talk. 

I love talking with Adam because he’s super smart and has a deep well of intellectual experience to draw from.  

I was telling him how I was working my way through the Head Space meditation app and how some of the days it was super hard to get my mind to quiet down.  

He told me that your mind is like water, sometimes it’s calm and sometimes it’s choppy.  You can’t really control that but you can manage your life around the knowledge of what state your mind is in.  

I think in practice it’s similar to how I sleep on airplanes.  If a plane is super noisy I’ll visualize that I am inside a clear box, a force field of sorts.  Inside the box all is quiet and calm.  All the noise and chaos is outside the box.  In much the same way I’m hoping my meditation practice, as pitiful as it is, will allow me to create that patch of calm water for myself within an angry sea. 

I’ve been getting in some awesome runs, especially trail runs.  I’m close to setting my race calendar for the summer and we’ll talk about that in the outro today. 

I went back to the cardio doctor for my 2-week review after the procedure.  They seem to think everything is well but they won’t declare success or failure for 3 months.  I guess there’s a burn-in period.  I’d better get the extended warranty.  

I’ve been watching my heart rate in my training and it seems to flip less.  We’ll see.  The trail runs have been really fun and it’s great to get back out into the green bosom of the world.  I got a pair of Hoka trail shoes and I love them so far.  Go figure, all the free shoes that I’ve gotten over the years and I fall in love with the ones that cost $130 a pair! 

Today we have an interesting chat with Jens who has started an on-line, peer-review, web site for running shoes.  He’s got a big idea about using the power of the crowd to rate shoes.  You might ask, “What does that have to do with running, Chris?”  

Well, you know I have a deep affection for entrepreneurs and also a fascination with the evolution of the internet and its ability to democratize and disintermediate.  Listen to what Jens and I chat about and see if you can tease out the larger moving pieces.  

In the first section I talk about what people see as their ‘purpose’ when they start running and what we can learn about it. 

In the second section I’ll chat about some stuff (that’s a technical term) that I have learned from hanging around venture capitalist and how some of the stuff you assume isn’t really true. 

It’s great to have summer here.  I feel good about the future.  

On with the show!

Section one - Running Tips

You purpose to start running -

Voices of reason – the interviews

Jens Jakob Andersen

Here are a few links: - read the text on the footer on the right - I'm the only founder and owner. - check this tool. It will blow your mind. A completely new way of comparing running shoes. - got massive media coverage from this research. We also did this one: Together those two got us into +100 newspapers/magazines around the world. Examples:,, and

Section Two – Life Lessons

Managing like a VC -


What did I tell you?  Isn’t Jens an interesting thinker?  What, you don’t like what I’m doing here?  You didn’t like this show? I’ve got good news for you then, you have reached the end of episode 4-313.  

In a few weeks we’ll mark 8 years since the first episode of RunRunLive came crawling ugly and badly recorded to life.  

That’s nothing.  Steve Runner of Pheddippidations is a having a 10 year anniversary this summer.  Adam is putting together a celebration audio collection for him – so send Adam your audio and let Steve know how much he’s influenced your life. 

Do you know who my first interview was?  My buddy Frank.  I actually went for a nice easy ride with Frank out on the Minuteman Trail down to Alewife last Saturday.  

He can’t run anymore because he’s got a bad hip but I’m going to talk him into buying a mountain bike and doing the Hampshire 100 with me this year.  

Yes, I’m going to spin up my mountain biking this summer as a change of pace.  I got a bike for my youngest and I’m going to see if I can corrupt her as well.  

I’m also quite close to pulling the trigger on an Olympic distance tri.  I’ll have to spin up my swimming – which is hard for me because I suck at it, but again, it will be good for me to get off the road marathon hamster wheel and let my body heal.  

And that, my friends is I guess the biggest news, and the hardest thing for me to do.  I’m not going to try to qualify for Boston this summer.  The new qualification deadline of Sept 1st just doesn’t work for my life balance.  

We’ll see how I do this summer and come back to it with fresh eyes, fresh legs and a fresh perspective in the fall.  You know it will all work out.  When you stop seeking the answer sometimes appears for you.  

The other race on my calendar is the Hood to Coast Relay that I’ll be running for cancer research.  Please lend me your support – Support my Hood-to-Coast Relay for Cancer Research - 

I haven’t locked down plans yet but I want to take some time, go out early, and drive through some of the states I’ve never been in on my way out there.  

The MarathonBQ book is doing well and I am starting to see success stories from people who have used it to qualify this spring.  If you know someone who yearns to qualify or just to take 30-40 minutes off their marathon time get them a copy of MarathonBQ.  It’s the real deal of how I qualified for Boston with my limited time and talent. 

Here’s a thought to take you out. 

As I mature in my years I begin to understand that life isn’t about a series of discrete goals.  Life isn’t a straight line.  Life is a compilation of seasons.  Each season is different.  Each season has its challenges and its gifts.  The season you are in is neither good nor bad, it just is.  

You have to be present in your current season of life and live it.  Don’t live in past seasons, don’t live in future seasons – live in the now that is your season. 

And as you turn, turn, turn, I’ll see you out there. 

Closing comments



Direct download: epi4313.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 11:34am EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-314 – Bonnie Talks Easy Yoga 

(Audio: link) [audio:]

Link epi4314.mp3

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Intro Bumper:

Hello and welcome to episode 4-314 of the RunRunLive podcast.  Yes it’s been a month… or two fortnights… since you last received a RunRunLive podcast.   But now, your wait is over.  As you sleep I have silently packaged up another greasy ball of endurance sports content and slid it down the pipes of the internet to your electronic familiar.  

And it’s been a weird month indeed.  In my last missive from the field I told you how I had lost my computer, a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 that I have been using since last November.  And how with that missing computer went all the files for Episode 4-313 – ‘the lost masterpiece’.  

This week, two weeks later, after I had gotten a new Surface, procured all the magic software that I require for my clandestine audio wrangling and tickled my ganglia into producing today’s replacements show – Delta sent my old one back to me.  

Yeah, I got it back.  So next week I’ll double down and release the stillborn Episode 4-313.  It will be our little game of time travel! 

What’s crazy is how attached I am to my devices. When I lost it, it was like losing a friend.  I went through, denial, anger, grief and acceptance – then it shows up! 

My training has been epic over the last couple weeks.  I’m back on the Mountain Bike and back in the water and back on the trails.  As you didn’t hear in the missing episode I decided to get off the road marathon merry go round and have some fun this summer.  And fun I am having by the bucket load. 

I signed up for an Olympic Triathlon in Mid-July.  Is that where I line up with nations from all over the world and march around the infield representing my country in full splendor?  No, it’s not. It’s about a mile swim, a 22 mile bike ride and a 10K.  Twice as long as a sprint tri.  

Swimming is my weakest sport.  Weakest is probably the wrong phraseology.  Swimming is the part where I have the least racing confidence.   I’ve been trying to get into the pool and do some drills because I haven’t swum at all for almost two years.  

Last Saturday Coach had a 1700 yard pool workout on the schedule with a 2 hour bike.  It was a nice day so I decided to just go down to the pond and do it as a brick.  (Meaning do an open water swim in the pond and then take my mountain bike out for a tour.)  

I eyeballed the pond and guessed it was probably 1/3 of a mile across.   I got my wetsuit on and set out.  After I warmed up I fell into a nice rhythm.  The pond is still cold enough to be comfortable, maybe 75 degrees. The water was black and murky and full of pollen, and I was basically looking at nothing.  The sky was overcast so the sun wasn’t in my eyes when I rolled to breathe.  

When I had been doing a lot of pool work a couple years ago when that Plantar Fasciitis sidelined me, I managed to work out a 3-stroke alternate breathing pattern. Stroke – Stroke – Stroke – Breathe Right, 1 2 – 3 Breathe Left, and so on.   Miracles of miracles this seems to have corrected most of my slice.  When I sighted I was swimming fairly true towards the horizon.  (With My old 2-stroke cadence I basically swam in a circle and had to site and correct constantly.  

The cold water flowed by in a murky silence.  Dark and deep.  The grey skies muffled the world outside my goggles.  The tri-wet-suit kept me easy, balanced and true in the water.  The ear plugs completed the deprivation.  I fell into a deep meditative practice and pulled silently across the lake.  

When I got close to the end I turned around and pulled back.  There was a bit of a head wind and a little chop on the return but I was relaxed and strong, considering it was like my 3rd time in the water in 2 years.  

I had stuffed my Garmin under my swim cap to see if I could at least get the distance estimate.  It won’t pick up your HR through the water, but it will track the GPS, and if you put it under your cap it gets jostled around less.  

When I climbed out of the water at the town beach feeling tired but settled I checked the watch.  According to Mr. Garmin I had been in the water for 56 minutes and had swum 1.49 miles.  Really? I was blown away! Even if it was off by 30% that was a hell of a swim for my 3rd time in the water.  

I hopped on my 29er and rode the trails for another 2 hours – for a heck of a workout.  

So the lesson, my friends, is that your body doesn’t forget the training.  Once you have the endurance engine and the endurance mindset it doesn’t go away.  I rolled out tools that I trained into my body in the winter of 2013 – and my machine remembered them. 

I hope that Oly lets us wear wetsuits.  My two-piece leopard print bikini just has too much drag.  

I went out for a run the next day in the trails.  I was supposed to do like 1:45.  I’ve started taking Buddy for a first 2 ish mile loop, then I stick him back in the house and go out for the rest.  He’s getting old and his hips bother him  20 minutes is enough to get him some exercise but not wreck him. 

I’m pumping up this little hill on the trails behind my house, with my hat on, my head down and my headphones in, lost in the run and WHAM! I take an overhanging oak tree right off the noggin like somebody hit me with a 2 x 4.  

There I am laying on the trail seeing stars and I feel bits of teeth in my mouth! This tree fell across the trail about 5.5 feet off the ground and I ran right into it.  When I hit it it jammed my jaws and broke a couple of my teeth! Crazy.  So I took the dog home, put the tooth pieces on my desk and went out and finished the run.  No worse for wear but I did have to visit the dentist and get a bunch of teeth bonded up. 

Tuesday I ran 1:45 with my buddy Bob in the land locked forest and Wednesday I rode my mountain bike the 18 miles to work and back.  I feel like superman but I’m beat! I love summer! I love multisport training! 

We’ve got a great show for your today.  I have a chat with Bonnie Kissinger, triathlete, mom, engineer and Yoga instructor.  I used Bonnie’s yoga routines for my Boston training this year.  I think it helped and I definitely learned some new tricks.  (Old dog – new tricks). 

I wanted to plumb her thoughts on the current popularity of yoga and meditation and how we can make it more accessible for every day runners like you and me.  

In the first section I’ll chat about how beginning runners can find the time to start their fitness routines.  In the second section I’ll review a book I read last week called “The Art of Work” – that is about how to find your calling. 

Everything is cool.  It’s summertime and the living is easy.  The catfish are jumpin and the cotton is high.  

On with the show!

Section one - Running Tips

Finding time to start running -

Voices of reason – the interviews

Bonnie Kissinger

Coach Bonnie Kissinger is a 500 RYT and mechanical engineer, specializing in yoga for athletes. She is also a certified health coach and Ironman Triathlete. With 10 years of experience teaching yoga and focusing on functional movements in yoga, her instruction focuses on cultivating more balance within joints and better kinetic movements.

30 Min Hamstring Y Class:

Meditation 101:  Lesson 1:

Triangle Chat:

Section Two – Life Lessons

The Art of Work -


OK My friends, you lucky devils, you herd of catastrophically fortunate humans, you got to the end of the episode 4-314 of the RunRunLive Podcast and next week, if all goes according to plan I’ll post-date-launch episode 4-313 with some sleight of hand, so that future generations will never know there was a gap! Re-writing history we are.  

As it turns out, I’m racing this weekend.  Getting up at the crack of dawn on Sunday and driving down to Plymouth for the Mayflower Brewery ½ marathon.  I’m treating it as a tempo run, not a race.  I haven’t been training for road racing – so I just have to not hurt myself and get a little exercise with friends. 

My heart seems to be working ok.  With the multisport I don’t drive as much direct stress into it but it seems to be staying in zone 2 well and it recovers very quickly from efforts.  There’s an AFib support group on Facebook that Paula pointed me to.  It seems that this malady is quite common.  

You might say Chris, you’re pushing it too hard, but the multisport training is more of an overall body stressor than a heart stressor. It’s actually quite well balanced. I’m not worried about it or giving it much attention at this point – I’m just having fun. 

You know what else is really prevalent?  Cancer!  That’s why I’m continuing to support cancer research this summer.  I set up a page for the Hood to Coast Relay.  The link is in the show notes.  I’m still fleshing out my campaign, but any donation you can make helps.  Cancer sucks.  

Also I n the show notes are links to a few of Bonnie’s yoga videos that I used, and continue to use, in my training.  Check out her site and the resources she has there.  

It is summertime! I’ve already started harvesting salad from my garden.  My hops, my berry crops, my herbs and my beans are all thriving.  My peppers and tomatoes are a bit sad, I’ll have to give them some chemical encouragement this weekend. 

But my biggest success is the new potato box that we are experimenting with.  You build a simple board box, with 4 upright posts and flat boards up the sides.  I made mine 4 X 4 – which is a little large in retrospect.  

You start by putting one row of boards on – so in my case like 8 inches high.  You fill that up with soil and plant your potato sets.  As the potatoes grow you add boards and soil so the box keeps getting higher.  I’m up to 4 boards now with no sign of stopping.  I’m going to have 300 pounds of potatoes.  

In theory, you are supposed to be able to remove the bottom boards and harvest from the bottom.  We’ll see how that works.  That seems to run counter to Newton’s laws.  But, I’ll try.  You have to keep learning new things.  

I guess that’s what scares me or disappoints me about this heart problem.  It might mean I have to stop going longer, deeper and harder in my sports pursuits.  To me that means a curtailing of adventure.  I don’t do all this stuff for achievement, I do it for adventure.  That’s the itch that needs to be scratched. That’s how I’m wired. 

I like to learn.  As they say in the business world; “I’m a hunter, not a farmer.” How about you?  When was the last time you tried something new?  Something outside your routine?  Something that forced you to learn?  Something that, maybe, scared you a bit?  

How are you positioned to rise to a new challenge?  What would you do if you lost your laptop? How would you react if you learned you had a heart problem or something worse?

These people in this AFib FaeceBook Group are very scarcity and fear focused.  They bemoan all the things they can’t do.  Like a recent post where a bunch of them gave up sex due to fear of triggering a heart-racing episode – (which is kinda what sex is about, no?) 

All they can focus on is loss because they started with the wrong mindset.  They were never comfortable with what they had to begin with.  They weren’t grateful for what they had. With this existing negative mindset they are less capable to deal with any new challenges. They essentially see their heart problem as a confirmation of their negativity bias.  “See? I told you life sucks!” 

What if, and stay with me here, you instead saw your life and everything in it as a gift? How would that position you to deal with new challenges? Would, you maybe see them as opportunities?  Opportunities to break with the old, embrace a new beginning and rewrite the future? 

Maybe these things, as we have heard from so many challenged athletes on this show over the years, are not challenges per se, but gifts.  Ask yourself, what if you were given the gift of an eraser for your chalkboard.  What if you were forced by some event or challenge to wipe that future clean and start from scratch? 

And, how about this?  What if you didn’t wait until that car crash or divorce or disease to slap you up-side the head?  What if you started now and designed this cycle of renewal into your life? 

All interesting questions.  But what action can we take? 

It’s up to you.  There’s lots of tools out there for facilitating direction changes.  I would suggest having an adventure before the summer is over.  Take a leap.  I don’t know what an adventure is for you.  Maybe it’s hiking the Appalachian Trail.  Maybe it’s taking a sabbatical to work in a homeless shelter.  Maybe it’s writing that book that’s been kicking around in your head. Maybe it’s a road trip across the country with your kids (god help you). Maybe it’s walking into your boss’s boss’ office and saying “I have a plan!”. 

Large or small.  Take a leap.  Schedule an adventure in the next 3 months.  Large or small.  And let us know what it is.  

Cause some chaos in your life…and I’ll see you out there. 

Closing comments

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