Mile by Mile

I ran two miles today. My parents were at a graduation party and Tom was at Mondauk playing basketball. While I did get the invite to both, I didn’t want to go to a grad party and we all know what happened last time I played basketball at Mondauk. I decided it would be the perfect time for a run but this time I was going to go to the track because that’s what the trainers told me to do. I put my shoes and watch on and was out the door. As I was driving to the track I passed Mondauk and figured it would be better to run it there.

It was a gorgeous day and people were all over the place. I walked to the start of the mile loop in my green and yellow short shorts almost feeling like I didn’t belong. I was a little bit self-conscious wondering what these people were going to think when they saw me run a single mile, be really tired, and then leave even though I’m dressed like a marathoner. I stretched, lined up, and was off. It was pretty crazy to start in all honesty. I’ve run that path hundreds if not thousands of times and I’ve never been injured while running on it. When I started running it felt just like the thousand other times I had run on it, INJURY-FREE. I ran the whole mile in 7:22 and walked a bit afterward trying to decide what to do. I said I would wait a few minutes and if my back still felt normal I would run another.

A few minutes later I was back running although this time was different. About 400 meters in it hit me, I should have seen this coming. I started to get tired. 7:20 pace was not a walk-in-the-park and I was putting in noticeable effort. My legs were sore and hurt a little bit on each step, something I’m not used to anymore. Getting back into shape is always terrible but for once I’m embracing it, I was glad to feel out of shape because now I can at least appreciate it and not take for granted the process of getting in shape, at least I’m running. I finished up the second mile in 7:25 and quite out of breath but elated that I had no back-pain whatsoever. It was great knowing that yesterday was not a fluke.

It felt amazing, as I said to Bud “it was even more pain-free than yesterday” to which he replied “there aren’t different levels of pain-free”. I reworded myself and we agreed that you can feel ‘almost pain-free’ and then ‘more pain-free’ from that initial ‘almost pain-free’. Classic mix-up. But it didn’t go from almost pain-free to more pain-free. It went from 98% pain-free to 100%. There was nothing today. I’m going to be sore tomorrow but obviously that’s okay. I might treat myself and my back to a day off. If I’m feeling in an extra good mood maybe I’ll sneak in a mile long run or something but I don’t want to get ahead of myself. In the past two days I’ve run 16.2% of my YEARLY mileage. If I had done that at this point last year I would have had to have done over a marathon each day. Baby Steps!

Running log 6/10/2012: 2 miles


Pacquiao Bradley Fight

I watched the Manny Pacquiao Timothy Bradley fight last night. I don’t know that much about boxing but believe it or not I’ve watched my fair share of fights and know some of the big names in boxing. From what I understood going into this fight, Manny was going to win. The fight played out and Manny did whatever he wanted, he was the man, stronger, faster, and there was really only ONE round you could argue in favor of Bradley. Lederman’s score card had it 11 rounds to 1 and those calling the fight on HBO agreed. The numbers showed this, Pacquiao landed 253 punches to Bradley’s 159, and the power punch count was 190 to 100 (that stat is off the top of my head but it was something close to that).

As the judges score cards were read we were shocked to hear the first one call it 115-113 in favor of Pacquiao. 7 rounds to 5? Really? How did he have it that close. The next judge scored it 115-113 in favor of Bradley. This was unbelievable. The final judge’s scorecard also had 115-113 for Bradley and Manny actually lost the fight. Even Bradley was quoted before the cards were read as saying something like this, “I threw everything I had at him, I just couldn’t beat him.” The HBO guys calling the fight were disgusted as was everyone else I was watching with.

This brings me and most other people to the same conclusion, the fight was rigged. I would put any amount of money on the fact that those judges did not call the fight without something else influencing their decision. I don’t know what it was and I don’t know the history of boxing well enough to give an educated guess but this fight was obviously rigged. How bad Manny beat him was almost as obvious as if it had been a knock-out in which case Manny must have won. What would have happened then? To think that a fight as big that could be rigged is not a good feeling. Obviously there’s been suspicion but as far as I’m concerned this confirmed it for me that professional sports can be rigged completely. People calling the fight even said “If you gave Bradley the benefit of the doubt in every single round, I still don’t see anyway you can give him the fight.” This was a disgrace to the sport of boxing.

1 mile

I ran a mile today. I didn’t walk it or jog it, I ran it. My back didn’t really bother me. I can’t even explain how that just happened. I’ve been watching track races for the pst 4 days I was in the backyard with Elvis and I tossed the Frisbee from the deck to the shed. I was in just running shorts. I said to myself “I’m going to jog over and get that”. I jogged over and thought “You know, my throat isn’t too bad right now, I’m gonna jog a lap around the block barefoot” my typical .33 mile loop. I got to the driveway and said “You know, I’m ready to move up, I’m putting shoes on and I’m going do two laps around the block instead of one”. I put shoes on, grabbed my watch, did some stretching, and was on my way.

Probably 15 seconds in I was supposed to turn left to do my normal loop but I said to myself “Fuck it, I’m turning right to run the mile loop instead. If my back starts to hurt I’ll walk it in I don’t really care”. I didn’t look at my watch once the entire time and I ran the entire loop. About 650 I thought I started to feel something but didn’t panic. I kept going and told myself that I couldn’t think it was going to hurt or imagine the pain, this fucker had to convince me that it still wasn’t ready or else I was finishing this mile. I won that battle and finished the mile. I didn’t look at my watch once or think about how fast I was going. I was breathing hard but that was more because my throat is swollen shut then me being totally out of shape. I was smiling the entire last 800 meters and just kept thinking that I didn’t want to go too fast because I know I shouldn’t run more than a mile but I want to keep running.  I finished exhausted but extremely happy, it literally felt like I crossed the line after winning a race.

I looked at the watch and it said 7:06.30 which is way faster than I would have guessed. I was almost ready to run another one but figured I would quit while I was ahead. Immediately afterward my back felt completely normal. I’m going to be honest it feels slightly off right now but it’s rather insignificant. As far as I’ve read and reinforced by my friendly reader/commenter Tozan, it’s not unusual to feel some sort of pain after coming back in the area of the fracture even after it’s fully recovered. Trust me, I’m not going to jump into 3 mile runs every day this week. This was a successful mile but that doesn’t give me the green light to say “I’m not injured anymore, let’s get rolling”. I’m going to take it slow.

It’s just great to be back running. I can finally put something in my running log other than “back” even if it is just “1 mile”.

Over and Under Rated

I’m going to preface this post with exactly what inspired it. I picked the band Weezer to listen to while I played Diablo last night. I got through about 5 or 6 songs then Beverly Hills hit and without even thinking I minimized IN THE MIDDLE OF DUNGEON to change the song. I hate that song and thought to myself “How is this song ever played on the radio?” In trying to find another song I saw one of my all-time favorite Weezer songs and thought “Now this is a hidden gem that I never hear on the radio, how does crap like Beverly Hills get played but not this?” and boom, that’s how I got the idea for this post. My opinion of overrated songs and underrated songs by the same band. As always, feel free to comment with other songs for these bands or bands of your own.

OverratedBeverly Hills
This song is bad. The instruments do nothing special at all and the lyrics are a joke with an emphasis on the chorus. It’s slow and hard to listen to, I really don’t understand why a radio station would say to themselves that this would be a good one to play. At this point when I hear that first little drum roll I’m programmed to just insta-change it.

Underrated The World Has Turned and Left Me Here
I can’t take credit for the discovery of this awesome song. Bud Schmidt showed it to me by uploading one of his CD’s onto my original XBOX. Jeff and I listened to that CD every single time we played Tony Hawk which was a lot. This song was on there and I loved it. Unlike Beverly Hills, when I hear that small intro drum part, I know I’m in for 4 minutes of a great song. The lyrics actually have some thought behind them and the song develops the whole way through. For whatever reason, this song isn’t known as one of Weezer’s greats but I think it should be.

Pink Floyd

All because a song is overrated in my opinion doesn’t mean it’s bad. I’m okay with this song, I don’t think it’s that good, but I don’t think it’s bad. I just don’t get why this is the Pink Floyd song I hear most on the radio. It has a unique sound and delivers a sort of cool message I guess but this song has never done it for me. When you have a band as good as Pink Floyd I can’t justify picking this song over some of their other ones.

UnderratedComing Back to Life
I’ve never heard this song played anywhere except my computer. Ever since I’ve heard this I’ve always been a big fan. I’ll admit it takes a little long for the song to get started but that’s a big thing with Pink Floyd, you have to listen to the whole song to get the full effect. Once it hits 2:35 and the song actually gets going it’s awesome. The guitar solos throughout are some of my favorites from Pink Floyd. I’ve never heard this song anywhere or seen anyone mention it ever. I don’t know if I’m entirely alone in the fact that I like it or not but I think it’s underrated.


I’ll probably get some shit for putting Guster on here but as a Guster fan someone had to point this out. Satellite is the only Guster song I’ve ever heard on the radio. Apparently this is the song that got them kind of popular. This surprised me because overall it’s pretty slow and bleak in my opinion. It’s not bad once it gets going but it doesn’t do enough for me to be considered any better than some of Guster’s average songs.

Again this is a song that only pretty big Guster fans would know so I don’t except anyone to have heard of it. It’s broken into two parts. The first half goes from slow to fast a few times and then subtly transition into a very catchy second part with some fun drums. While the first part is great, the second part makes the song. It grows through the entire little verse thing and hits a pinnacle and it’s great. Definitely worth checking out if you like anything else Guster (except Satellite, it’s nothing like Satellite).

Ben Folds

OverratedThe Luckiest
Tom and I were discussing this and whether Rockin’ the Suburbs should be here. It was a close second for me. I don’t really know how ‘rated’ The Luckiest is but the fact that it’s ‘rated’ at all is a sign that it’s overrated. It’s Brick’s ugly cousin that should never have poked his head out. It’s slow and boring and drawn out and I don’t know if I want to cry or kill myself. When Matt Bonanni tells me that this is his favorite Ben Folds song I just can’t believe  it. Even Mark said he liked this song and I just don’t see what’s appealing about it in any way. I would rather listen to Beverly Hills than this song. This is the worst song in this entire post. Beverly Hills is the most overrated, but this one is the worst.

UnderratedNot the Same
This was not an easy pick because I think Ben Folds has a lot of underrated songs. Satchel heard this song freshman year and was so intrigued that he asked me who it was and what it was called. It was then added to his playlist along with Run Away Train by Soul Asylum. It draws you in with a simple but catchy drum beat and keeps getting a little trickier as the song progresses. They add one little thing every now and then and the song just gets a tiny bit better as you keep going. This is another one that I’ve never heard from other people.

Linkin Park

Most people know Linkin Park has a special place in my heart. I don’t know why but it was exactly what Alex, Ben, and I were looking for in middle school. Hybrid Theory was great except I never liked this song. For some reason this gets air time on the radio every now and then and I can’t understand why (if it’s on I keep it though because I support LP). I don’t see what would separate this from the others in terms of a ‘hit’. It takes almost a whole minute to get going and by the time it hits the first verse I’m ready to change it. I can only truly come up with 1 song from Hybrid Theory that I like less than Crawling and it’s very close.

UnderratedDon’t Stay
I understand why this doesn’t get played on the radio but most people who don’t own Meteora will not know about this song. This is Linkin Park at it’s finest. Loud, hard guitar, pissed off, and violent. If I’m on a run and this song comes on I have no choice but to increase the pace to a minute or so faster than what I was  going. The song does a good job of leading you up to that little break down and which turns into this explosion that gets you so fired up and by the time the final chorus rolls around you’re ready to murder someone. That’s what Linkin Park is about. Also, Mike and Chester look hilarious in the first 20 seconds of the video, unfortunately it’s not the actual video for the song.


OverratedFirst Date
Blink is one of those band where you go back and listen to some of their songs now and wonder “how did I ever like this song?” Well I never liked First Date. I’ll admit the chorus is catchy and I like it but I think the verses are that bad that I would change this song if it was on. I can’t tell if the lyrics are a joke or not. I get that in the early 2000’s there were probably a lot of socially awkward kids who thought this song was genius but c’mon, “I’m too scared of what you think. You make me nervous so I just can’t eat” What?!?! How do you get away rhyming think and eat???

UnderratedFeeling This
This song is the opposite of First Date. Instead of being a pussy and talking about how nervous he is, he’s talking about how awesome the vibe is and how he’s going to bang this girl. That’s more like it. The chorus is unbelievably catchy to go along with the rest of the song as well. When Brett and I roomed together he would get upset if I played this right before he had class because he knew it would be stuck in his head for the next hour. If this was played on the radio instead of First Date every single time I would be a much happier listener.

Billy Joel

OverratedCaptain Jack
I know the song is about heroin which adds some cool points but overall I’m just not a fan of this song. The song is way to slow outside of the chorus and way to long for how average it is. Billy doesn’t show off his awesome voice or amazing piano skills really at any point of this song. It’s a big song because it tells the story of a white, rich, suburban loser who has it all but uses heroin when there’s no reason to. Tell me a story I haven’t heard before. All I know is how awkward it is when my mom and I are driving in silence and the line “Your sister’s gone out, she’s on a date. And you just sit at home, and masturbate” hits.

UnderratedNo Man’s Land / Great Wall of China / A Minor Variation
I’ve been listening to Billy Joel a lot more lately. He obviously has his classics but I found an album with a lot of songs that I had never heard and I really like them. Obviously three songs is too much to pick but I’m too new to the album to pick one. These three so far have stuck out to me as very good. I’ve never seen this side of Billy Joel. You can tell it’s him by his awesome voice but I think this style is a little different than what he’s famous for. I think he’s a little more rock and roll in these songs. I need to listen to the entire album more to really pick out a winner. Regardless, all three of these are better than Captain Jack in my opinion.


I listen to Awol a lot at work because it’s an easy Youtube playlist to put on and of course I like the band. For whatever reason this was the song that got them popular and I really don’t know why. I skip this about half the time when it comes on. It’s so much different from their other stuff and different from pretty much everything else too. I guess unique is in these days. There’s no definitive point in the song where it hits a good part or where I sit there and think “I’m enjoying listening to this.” This one doesn’t do it for me and I don’t know why it got big but I’m glad it did because they have a lot of other stuff that is much better and worth listening too.

UnderratedKnights Of Shame
There were others I could have picked but seriously, this had to be it. I know this won’t get radio time because it’s 12 minutes long so the only people who will hear this are big AWOL fans but it rocks. I already wrote about this in the other post Epic Songs so here’s a direct copy and paste from that because it still fits. Just off the little bass line in the first 10 seconds I can’t help but do the “Sam Dance”. There’s so many catchy little diddy’s in the entire song that you find replaying in your head over and over again during the day. It does a good job of switching it up every couple of minutes so you don’t lose interest. I really like Bruno’s voice in all of his songs but especially so in this one. There’s a two minute stretch that’s all rap which is a total twist but it works really well. He doesn’t rush through anything which I guess is why it’s so long but also why it’s so good.

Not What I Expected

So after all of this I do not have strep throat. The test came back yesterday and it was negative. What could be? Doc said maybe mono, so I got a blood test yesterday and it came back negative for mono today. He gave me some steroids or something and pretty much I take these for 6 days and if this ting isn’t gone I’m going to be really pissed off. Fortunately I feel better today then I have in the past week. I can turn my neck without having to turn my entire body which is good. I could drink this weekend but I’m going to decline strictly because I want this thing to go away.

In other news, the 10k was good. Levins dominated but that wasn’t a surprise. While Derrick made his move with 1200 to go (not 2k like I said) he said in the post-race interview that he planned on going with 5 laps to go (2k!!!) but felt bad and decided not to.
I predicted: 1) Levins, 2) Derrick, 3) Puskedra, 4)Sambu
Actual      : 1) Levins, 2) Sambu, 3) Derrick, 4) Puskedra
5th place was over 30 seconds behind Puskedra so it wasn’t really that close.

The 800 prelims were on two days ago and I have to give a shout out to someone who definitely doesn’t read this blog. Sam Ellison who went to Upper Dublin and a guy I would consider myself average friends with, made the 800 final. He was a junior when I was a senior and only ran the 400 so we didn’t really run together but regardless, great job for him.

The 5k is on tonight as well as a few other races. My 1500 prediction is ruined because big-time favorite Kyle Merber had a tough race and unfortunately missed making the finals. I thought he would get 2nd overall but now that’s not happening. Overall this seems to be a good weekend to take it easy because NCAAs are on and Heat-Celtics game 7 is on. Yay sports.

Give Credit Where Credit is Due

Yesterday morning I saw this facebook status, “everyone needs to put on hold saying lebron is the best in the league, he aint, durant is… leading his team in rebounds, plays defense, and hold on hold on he can score over 30 as well” and was very very tempted to comment on it but it was a kid I haven’t talked to in years so I figured it wasn’t worth it.

Last night after the Celtics-Heat game I saw this facebook status, “So y is it that kobe drop 45 at least 15 times a season and James does it once and James is the better player” from another kid I haven’t talked to in years but decided I would actually comment on this one.

I’m not a Lebron James fan. I don’t like the Heat and I want to see OKC crush either Boston or Miami in the finals. With that said, I’m not stupid or stubborn when regarding this topic. The only reason Lebron is not unanimously considered the best is because he can’t close games and don’t get me wrong that is a huge deal. But for the first 45 minutes of every game there is no one else you would rather have on your team. He’s one of the best defenders in the league (better than Durant), a great rebounder, and averages almost 28 points a game over his entire career (to KD’s 26.3). This is why that first status is retarded, but I didn’t say anything.

The second status just pissed me off though so I responded with this, “maybe because kobe only had 1 game with 45+ this season (all the way back in january) and got smoked in the 2nd round of the playoffs whereas lebron did it in a win-or-go-home situation IN BOSTON… at least give credit where credit is due.” I got two likes from his friends and he responded with “Ya that makes sense”.

I understand people HATE Lebron and honestly I can understand why. But when the guy goes off and single-handedly crushes the other team IN BOSTON, how can you not give the guy credit. He does something amazing, and instead of saying wow that was incredible, you say big deal he did it once, he’s still not good enough. You can hate someone all you want but when Lebron, who is easily under way more pressure than any athlete in sports right now and all of his actions are watched under a microscope, goes out and drops 45 points on 19-26 shooting with 15 boards to go along with it in a do-or-die situation on the road, you have to admire that a little bit and at least say good job.

I’m going to throw a line at you.
+/- -20,
4/18 shooting, 5 rebounds, 1 assist, 9 points.
That was the line for Paul Pierce last night. Nobody wants to go back on the road for a game seven when you have a golden opportunity and all the momentum in game six at home. The Heat now have command of the series and momentum for game 7. Sports Center will spend no more than 1 minute talking about how Pierce had a bad game. He is supposed to the be the leader of that team, he’s been there 14 years and he’s supposed to step up and win that game for the Celtics in his house and he absolutely sucked. You can’t even say he did okay, he was terrible. Why does he get a pass?

If Lebron had even close to the same line as Pierce and the Heat had lost, he would literally have an entire hour of Sports Center dedicated to him and how he can’t win. It can’t work both ways like that. That’s the problem with this series. If the Celtics won yesterday or if they win in game 7, it won’t be about the Celtics winning at all, it would be 90% about Lebron losing another big game. However, if the Celtics lose the series, it’s not their fault, father time has caught up to them and they had a heck of a season, and Miami should have won the series all along so good for them. That’s bogus. Are they old? Sure. But, they have three guaranteed hall-of-famers who have been pretty damn good in the playoffs this year and not to mention an incredible point guard in Rondo. The Heat lost Bosh and are down to Wade and Lebron offensively and Wade didn’t even show up last night yet it was still a blowout because of one and only one person, Lebron. The Celtics cruised through 3 straight wins and everyone was saying the Heat were screwed. If the Heat lost, no excuses. Now the Celtics aren’t looking good and will probably lose this series, but they won’t get nearly as much criticism even though they should.

Again, I’m not a Lebron fan but you have to recognize something great like that at least a little bit. I agree that he hasn’t proven he can close games and his first championship is long overdue but still, he plays like the best player in the league more often than he doesn’t.

This is Terrible

There’s no other way to put it than to say that I feel like absolute shit right now. I sleep for an hour or two at a time and then wake up for an hour. The amount of sleep compared to the amount of time I spend trying to fall asleep is probably close to equal. I can’t move my neck because whatever is in there is so swollen and trying to look in one direction or the other is just painful. You can actually see my neck sticking out on both sides from the swelling. Swallowing anything (let the jokes fly) even if it’s just my own saliva is painful. I have probably 5 canker sores that make any unusual movement with my tongue painful. Talking is uncomfortable and worst of all laughing hurts. I visit Fukung and watch Seinfeld much to my own dismay because if I even chuckle there’s pain. Jerry had a great line that had me cracking up but also in a lot of pain, “I had a dream last night that a hamburger was eating me!” How can you not laugh at that? I’ve been taking these anti-biotics for almost three days and it hasn’t gotten even a little bit better. I skipped work yesterday because I felt bad but went in for 7 hours today for whatever reason. Sitting and staring at a computer screen is probably the least painful thing I can do so I figured because I played Diablo for 7 hours yesterday (exaggeration) I should sit at the computer at work for 7 hours today. I’m definitely used to uncomfortable situations like this because of all the oral surgeries I’ve had but it’s never a pleasant feeling. Hopefully by Friday or Saturday it will be cleared up but I think that’s just wishful thinking. Until then, Mergatroid is almost a level 60 so I have my work cut out for me.

NCAA D1 Track and Field Predictions

I don’t think many people will care about this post but I’m going to do it anyway. Feel free to make your own predictions or trash mine.

The NCAA D1 track and field champs begin tonight and as an avid running fan, I thought it would fun to make predictions from the events I think I know: 800-10,000. Heat sheets are found here if anyone is curious. Here goes

800 Meters
Robby Andrews has turned pro so the former champ won’t be there to defend his title. In case you forgot, he won it last year with an incredible kick to just beat out Charles Jock. Two notes. A) Judging from regionals he’s learned how to run the rounds without wasting too much energy. He doesn’t go out in 50 flat like he normally does, he’ll wait and conserve his energy to be fresh for the finals. B) While Greer is in the field and a great kicker himself, he’s not quite on Robby’s level in my opinion in terms of kicking. I think the final plays out like this: Jock goes out ~50.mid with Loxsom then Martin close behind. Greer will be lurking a few spots back. In the final 150 Loxsom starts to fade and both Martin and Greer go around. Jock runs strong for the win in a fast time while Martin just holds off Greer for 2nd.
1) Jock
2) Martin
3) Greer

1500 Meters
Just as the 800 doesn’t have the returning champ, neither does the 1500. If Centro was in this and healthy he wins but fortunately for everyone else he’s not. The big names in my opinion are Merber, Batty, Lalang, McEntee, and Bayer with other notables such as Van Ingen, Casey, Finnerty, O’Hare, Hill, and of course Fernandez. Galen Rupp put it best when he said college 1500s/miles are all about who can run a 4:00 mile the fastest. While I think the winning time will convert to faster than 4:00, I see the pack being pulled through 800 in 2:00-2:02 by a guy who doesn’t have a chance to win (or Casey takes it out in 1:56 and fades to 8th place) and it will take a ~54 last lap to break 3:40. Batty and Lalang haven’t been impressive lately and I don’t see either of them in the top 3. O’Hare was indoor mile champ, but he was exactly that, INDOOR mile champ. He may be the one leading through 800 as he did indoor but I don’t see him doing much after that. This is an easy top two pick but I think Merber and McEntee have separated themselves and I’m actually going to give the nod to McEntee in a big kick just ahead of Merber who gets second. I want to say Fernandez for third but I’ll take him a surprising fourth closing, but unable to catch Bayer who has been racing really strong all season (but unable to pull off the W) who takes third.
1) McEntee
2) Merber
3) Bayer

3k Steeple
Would anyone actually be crazy enough not to pick Cabral? The guy is a machine. He ran 8:19 beating Huling and Jager after Jager took a nasty spill on the last water barrier. Jager would have won the race but only by a few seconds and it should be noted that Jager is the best steepler in the COUNTRY, not the NCAA. Donn Cabral wins this race. My steeple knowledge is lacking but I think Craig Forys, who has had a tough NCAA career, is finally turning everything around and this could be his big break. 8:28 is a really impressive time and I think he gets 2nd to a Cabral kick. There’s a few I like for third but I’m going with Poore from Indiana. He’s been running steeple since his freshman year and has proven himself on this stage before with a bronze last year.
1) Cabral
2) Forys
3) Poore

I’m going to say it right now, Cam Levins has been absolutely unbeatable and I see no sign that that will change any time soon. Whether it’s 13:30 pace or 14:30 he will dominate the field whenever he decides to go. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him go with 800-1600 left as opposed to 200-400 just because it’s his last race. Guys who are doubling 1500/5k shouldn’t be too beat up from the 1500 rounds the day before but they won’t want to push the pace if they’ve made the 1500 final. I see Lawi stepping up and hanging on for second. He’s had a disappointing outdoor season but if the pace is even remotely fast I think he takes silver. I see Sambu as most likely for Bronze with guys like Chelimo, Dunbar, Mead, Stilin, Hubers, and even PA HS Alumni Dan Lowry all in the hunt at the end of the race and with all of that talent I’m not going to take Sambu. I think you’ll see a few guys go when the pace picks up in the last mile or so which will be a mistake and Stilin will be there to run them down in the end for an upset and a bronze medal.
1) Levins
2) Lalang
3) Stilin

This is easy all round in my opinion. While I want Chris Derrick to win just as much as everyone else, it’s just not going to happen. He has an incredible college kick but as I said, I think Levins is on a level above everyone else. Derrick will not leave it until the last 400-800 because he knows Cam can outkick him. He’ll force the already quickening pace from decently far out (2k?) which will quickly drop all but a few. The top two are easy, Levins then Derrick. While Derrick won’t be able to hang with Cam, his kick is better than anyone elses and his endurance is too. Third is a bit tougher but not really. Assuming Derrick will push the pace because he wants to win, the true endurance runners will be favored. In my mind that leaves Luke Puskedra based on endurance (his crazy half) and Sambu based on pure talent. If it were a 5k, I’d take Sambu, but I’m taking Puskedra because I think the race will play into his running style more so than Sambu’s. Luke has always been close but never quite there but I think that changes tonight.
1) Levins
2) Derrick
3) Puskedra


Overall these are not the most outrageous predictions but it will be fun to see how they stack up to what actually happens. The 10k is tonight at 8:45 so be sure to watch.

Happy Sam Doesn’t Feel Good

I woke up yesterday and my throat did not feel great. Despite this, I went to the bike race anyway. Gourlay and I showed up at Tom’s place around 11:00 and the drinking began. I had a few shots and a few beers before a number of us went to watch the actual race. We met up with Gourlay’s family friends for a bit and cheered on the bikers. My favorite cheer came from Tom, “From worst to first!”. After an hour or so we went back to Tom’s place and played some standard drinking games. I was drunker than I thought I was but nothing crazy. Jonny showed up but didn’t know where Tom lived so Gourlay and I had to go find him. This was a problem because it was about to rain. Fortunately we found him and got inside seconds before it started pouring. Us three walked to Gourlay’s cousins house where I told everyone that I needed to go to sleep.

I slept on the couch in the middle of the party for ~45 minutes. I woke up slightly confused and with a headache but started drinking a little bit to make me feel better. Eventually us three decided to go back to Tom’s. Jonny biked home and Gourlay and I were left at Tom’s but no one was there and all of the doors were locked. We climbed onto the second story deck but even that door was locked. We had one beer each and figured we would wait there until people got back and then go HAM for the rest of the night. Tom showed up half an hour later and informed us that no one would be coming back and there would be no party to follow. We were disappointed and drove back home.

It was about 9:00 and I had a terrible headache. I figured I was just hungover and wanted to go to bed. By 10:00 I was asleep only to wake up at 12:00 with my throat killing me and a fever of 101. I was pissed. I went on and off the entire night where I would sleep for an hour and then wake up and lie uncomfortably awake for an hour until I fell back asleep. This happened until 9:00 this morning where I got up and somehow my fever was gone. My throat still hurt so I scheduled a doctors appointment for 3:00 this afternoon. I went to work and then to the doctors at three. He said it was likely strep throat and I have to take these pills for the next 10 days to get rid of it. I’m not thrilled because I’ve never had strep and it’s a pain in the ass as far as I can tell but it’s good to know that it will be gone shortly. This will put a slight delay in the arrival of my first run but in all honesty it’s probably a blessing in disguise. The longer I wait the less likely I am to re-injure myself so that can’t be all bad. Despite this, I’m still happy Sam.

To close, I just finished watching the movie Big Fish which was on my list. It was definitely entertaining and had me interested the whole time. Edward Bloom is a very likable character and the stories he tells are very elaborate and draw you in from the start. To be honest though, I didn’t entirely get the ‘big fish’ thing. I understand they said he was a big fish and all that but it didn’t completely connect for me especially with the ending. Maybe I need to watch it again because I missed a small part in the beginning but either way, it was a good movie, not great, but worth watching for sure.