Wetsuit Swimming at the Pool

221223 1628 I’m posting my old drafts UNEDITED. Reading the below I hope that was a rental wetsuit. I believe swimming in chlorine cancels any kind of warranty on a wetsuit. Do you like to swim? (I’ve said it before on this blog, but nothing makes you feel more out of shape than swimming.)

The day before today I got up and was at the pool by 6AM. It’s still dark here in Missouri at 6AM this time of year, and as I mentioned in an earlier post, we’re swimming at the outdoor pool. So with my shaded goggles I could just make out the stripe on the bottom of the pool, but I did come close to hitting my head on the wall the first couple of laps.

Swimming in the dark was interesting, but the significant point about this workout is how easy it felt. That’s due, I’m sure, to my wetsuit.

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221223 1624 I’m posting my old drafts UNEDITED. Comment below all the mistakes you see. I remember this incident. I didn’t mention that all the riders were wearing the same fancy cowboy shirts, like they were a riding team or something. This group wanted me to totally stop my bike while they passed. Some weeks later, I came up on a couple of ladies who were riding and so I completely stopped my bike, but they insisted I keep moving. You just never know with horses I guess.

The last couple of times I’ve been out on the Katy Trail I’ve seen horseback riders. I had never encountered them while out riding, even though the trail is open to horseback riding. A couple of weeks ago a group of riders were coming towards me. I thought I was being prudent and slowed way down, barely moving. Once cowboy in group stopped his horse completely, but when I got within 25 feet his horse bolted the other way. I stopped my bike and got off. Charlie Goodnight got his horse under control and Buffalo Bills Wild West Show passed on by without further incident. They, the riders, were actually very nice and were quite apologetic

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221223 1620 I’m posting my old drafts UNEDITED. Deal with it. Update to this: I finished Ironman Louisville 2014. It was so long ago I almost feel like I need to do it again to maintain my Ironman cred.

In a lot of ways I’m surprised that I even signed up for Ironman Louisville. Sure, I’sve wanted to complete an Ironman for a long time, but I never thought I had the patience, or the will, to train for one. I wanted to complete an Ironman like I want to swim the English channel or climb Mount Everest. Those would be amazing accomplishments for me, but I am not willing at all to do the work required to perform those feats. I remember being out on runs thinking, “Geez, can you imagine having to get ready for an Ironman. Who’s got time for that?”

I’d been reading Bob Shuler’s blog for a little while. He’s the One Hour Ironman, and he maintains that you can complete an Ironman with about one hour of training per day. That seems a little too good to be true, but I also heard about Raymond Britt and Sami Inkinen. Both of these fellows are ameteur triathletes and seem to qualify for Kona at will. They also have a couple of other things in common. They both seem to be very meticulous about recording their workouts. Just look at their websites. They are both intensley data-driven individuals, but a lot of triathletes meticulously record their workouts. So what else sets them apart? They both advocate shorter, more intense workouts. Workouts like this more than make up for slogging through mile upon mile, hour upon hour of low intensity training, they say. Looking at their results, who can doubt them?

Making sure I’m training at the right level of intensity is a struggle for me because I’m so lazy. It also means carefully recording, and reviewing, your workouts. You have to know what you did last time so that you know what to do this time. This doesn’t mean more miles necessarily, but rather making improvements on your pace, power, etc., during your work intervals.

The other thing to remember taking on this kind of training is to make sure you recover before your next hard workout.

Check out these guys’ websites and books. You’ll learn more from them than you will from me.

My strategy going into summer is to make sure I’m making improvements with each workout by not being so lazy, looking at those previous workouts and using the data

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My Shoulder is in Flames

221223 1614 I’m posting some old drafts UNEDITED. Don’t @ me, I see the mistakes, but I don’t want to fix them. Besides, with my writing ability who would know the difference? However, I do have an update to the below. The shoulder is much better. I’d say it’s at 95%. Time heals all wounds. The joints giving me fits right now are my elbows. Grr.

My right shoulder has been bothering me since August, the month I did the MR340. Coincidence? I doubt it. Something about paddling a kayak for 70 hours over 3 and a half days makes me think maybe I did something then to cause the jack it up. To be honest, it’s been tweaking me for the last couple of years when I swim, so the start of whatever is there has been in place for a while. What surprises is that it hasn’t gotten better since August, but has gotten worse.

What’s the matter? Basically I can’t lift my arm up to the side or above my head and reach back. So throwing a ball is out. My kids’ school does this thing once a year where the dads play dodgeball with the kids. I learned pretty quickly that my only option to hurl a ball was under handed, like a grandma playing catch with a four year old. I have to be very careful leaving a room and reaching back to pull the door closed, or reaching over to the passenger side of the truck to unlock the door (think analog locks for all you millennials). Motions like that make it feel like a switchblade is cutting me from the inside of my shoulder.

Did I Google it? Of course I did, but only after the last four or five weeks of it getting more painful. I read about impingement and torn rotator cuffs and bursitis and whatever else could be ailing the joint. I watched Youtube to learn how to do some shoulder stretches from the internet therapists, but found I really couldn’t do them because they hurt too much. Finally, because I really wanted to start swimming again I went to see the ortho doc. By the way, this is the ortho doc who helped me push my truck out of a ditch after I pulled up too far and dropped the front tires over the edge. He then went on to win the 5K trail run I was working that morning.

The doc looked at my x-rays and then moved my shoulder around in an effort to make me wince, at which he succeeded. His conclusion? Drum roll please…inflamed tissue in my shoulder joint. That was a bit of a let down. I feel like a weakling for going to the doc in the first place and was hoping I’d be validated with something like rotator cuff tear or out of socket shoulder or something along those lines. But inflamed tissue? Boring.

However, what I can’t figure out if why it’s only gotten worse since August. After the race I took off for about four weeks and didn’t do any kind of upper body workout. I’ve even taken off the last week and a half and it still doesn’t feel better. The doc said the inflamed tissue is getting caught in my joint when I turn it in certain ways causing the pain. He put me on some anti-inflammatory meds and wants to see what happens. He actually let me choose between an MRI and meds. I’m not a pill popper but the $4 copay for the meds seemed more reasonable.

I’ll finish the meds and re-evaluate. I hope to get back up to speed so I can start swimming after the new year with all the other New Year Resolutionists. I asked the doc if the tissue would just become inflamed again once I quit the meds. He said maybe. Grr!

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I’m surprised I still have an account. I don’t remember the last time I logged in here. OK.

Have a great day?




Clinton, MO

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Serious Post about Training your Pelvic Floor

When I was in the Navy a fellow sailor once told me that he had never farted in front of a girl. This was because, he said in all earnestness, he had such good control of his butthole. Now I didn’t let it show, of course, but I was really, really jealous of his superior butthole control. I knew my butthole control was fair to middling at best. The worst part of it all, having such poor control of my butthole, I had to admit it was all my fault.


You see, I had plenty of time to exercise the affected muscles, but I never did. While standing mid-watches I could easily have done several, if not several dozen, kegels and clinches. They’re easy to do and generally nobody even notices as long as you’re wearing pants at the time. So really, there was no excuse for having such a weak sphincter. I relied on my general good health and my youth and vigor to suppress all unwanted flatulence, but I can positively affirm it’s not enough to avoid embarrassing yourself while riding in the elevator down to the lobby with a couple of salesladies heading out to TGI Fridays for dinner.

I had a similar feeling of regret for not having trained just a couple of weeks ago. It was the second annual half marathon in my town. We don’t have marathons or even half ones in town very often and so it would seem like a no brainer to train and run in my own town’s race. But for some reason, I elected to be lazy, put off training, and didn’t run. I felt like I’d let down my town and some of the race organizers who I know, but most importantly, I had let down myself.

Now, I have been running pretty regularly, but not what you call training. I go out and run around 4 miles 4 or 5 times a week, maybe a little longer run on Saturday, but I’m just moving at an easy pace, not trying to hit a goal or maintain any kind of speed. I’m not putting my body under enough stress to force it to develop strength or endurance. I’m relying on my general good health and my youth and vigor to get me through these runs.

Previously in my youth I would’ve signed up for this half and slogged through it, but I’m old and wise enough now to know that’s not a good idea. Last year, when I was younger and more foolish, I did just that and came limping over the finish line with a sore hip and knee. I just hadn’t been running enough to take on 13 miles all at once.

prevent injury for life 460

(Not me, but pretty close.)

So, I missed an opportunity to run a race in my own town because I had neglected to train. And it was all my fault. It seems easy, training is just pushing your body a little farther and faster than it wants to go, taking just enough of a break (which doesn’t mean inactivity) to let it recover, and then doing it again. Shouldn’t we all always be training? Junk miles are so much easier but they lead to embarrassment when the ladies from the local running club, who run purely for the social aspect and not for speed, are standing at the finish line cheering as you come in while already wearing their finisher medals. They’re giving you high fives and telling you “good job!” the same way you tell your first grader she did a good job on the picture of an African elephant(?) she drew with colored chalk.

Though I didn’t run this year I did volunteer. I worked an intersection and helped direct traffic. It was a little boring when there were gaps in the race and no one was coming by, but I found a way to make my time productive. Even while watching the other athletes go by I found a way to train. I must of done about 8 dozen kegels, and since I was wearing pants, hardly anyone noticed.


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Serious Post About Pooping Under a Bridge

My wife an I have an acquaintance who has an online presence that is, well, a little precious. His posts are always quite serious and introspective. Don’t get me wrong, he is a very good writer, but at the same time it’s a little eye rolling. I was reflecting on that and thinking about my own blog and realized people probably think the same thing about my posts. Not that they’re introspective or anything, but that I make an effort to be humorous. I’m sure that all three of you who read are all like, man, this guy thinks he is soooo funny. In light of that I will now only post serious articles meant to educate and challenge my readers. In other words, my blog is growing up and becoming an adult, so no more silliness.


Last Sunday three miles into a six mile run I took a huge dump under a bridge. I hadn’t planned on taking a dump under a bridge when I started my run that afternoon, but that’s how it turned out. I’m generally pretty good about getting the train out on time first thing in the morning, but that morning the conductor wasn’t feeling it and so it didn’t happen until the first three miles of that run cleared the tracks.

I’ve mentioned before but I live next to what we around here call corp land. When the Army Corp of Engineers built the reservoir in the early 70s there was a lot of surrounding land that they claimed. Roads run through that land and you can still run or hike down those old roads in a lot of places. Last Sunday I decided to run down Division Road which loops through a section of this corp land. This section of road has a number of bridges that cross over various streams and smaller rivers.

From my house to one of the bridges on Division Road it is three miles exactly. I ran to that point and decided to pause for just a moment and take in the nature surrounding me. There was no one else around and so I just stood and watched the water and listened to the birds. That was a mistake. As soon as I stopped I knew I had a runaway train to deal with. I tried to ignore it and actually took a couple of steps as if to start running, but it was a no go. The crossing gates were down and I was sure to collide with a locomotive if I proceeded.

I contemplated briefly about where to go, and I mean briefly, because things were happening pretty fast, if you know what I mean. I quickly ducked under the bridge, dropped my shorts, leaned back by supporting my weight on an overhead girder and did the deed, right out there in the open air, like a freakin’ coyote or raccoon.

stick in mud

Well, that was done, but now I had to decide how to, um, clean myself. I swear to you I could not find any good size leaves. There were no sycamores or maples or anything like that around. All I saw were these little scrub bushes that had leaves about the size of my thumb nail. It was time to think outside the box. That’s when I saw a couple of sticks nearby. I picked up the thinner of the two, because, well, reasons, and proceeded to make an attempt and cleaning up. The stick broke off in my butt. I literally had a stick up my butt.

I pulled that out of there and made a second attempt with the larger stick. It didn’t break but I wasn’t sure how effective it was. That’s when my eyes fell to an old sock that was lying down by the water. Who knows whose sock that had been? Who knows how long it had been drifting around in that water until that fateful day it ended up on the bank? I sure don’t know. All I knew was it had once been white but was now a filthy dirty grey color, and it was turned inside out. I picked it up and it was wet and had mud caked to one side. I shook it off and made an honest effort to make myself whole.

That was done and so I could continue my run. Three more miles. I washed my hands off in the river and looked around just to see if anyone else had witnessed the spectacle. I couldn’t imagine what I would do if a camouflaged duck hunter had been sitting across the way. What a story he would tell.

I ran home feeling a lot lighter, probably because I wasn’t carrying as much dignity as I had started out with. But what else could I have done? I mean, what were my options?

Well, one option would’ve been not to blog about it so that three more people could read about it and thus lose even more of what little dignity I maintain, but what good would that do? This blog is meant to educate and enlighten my readers. What if another jogger needs to let a train leave the station half way into a run?

So, what have we learned? 1) The train may be delayed but it’s going to show up at some point 2)  You gotta do what you gotta do 3) Scout out where the big leaves are 4) Maybe use a stick? 5) An old wet dirty tube sock may not be a bad option.

There you have it, a humor free post about a very adult subject. I don’t know if there are any blogger awards for this type of serious subject matter but I anxiously await mine.

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Big Cycling News!

Good news, everyone! I know you’ve been waiting to hear this. I got the blu-ray player in the garage to connect to my wifi! And when I say I got it to connect I mean it just started working again.

good news

Of course you understand the implications of this unexpected reconnection of electronic devices. That’s right, I now have the entire Netflix library available to me while I ride. I’m no longer bound to talkies recorded onto the silver discs that the pioneers had to use to watch movies. For instance, I have ridden through several episodes of The Walking Dead over the last couple of weeks (Ooh, that Negan is so horrible, but so mesmerizing, I’m so confused).

Last night, while not riding my bike, I watched kind of a weird movie in the living room. It is called The Survivalist. Not exactly what I had in mind but not a bad movie, probably a little slow for most people. It was just a little on the artsy side. And be warned, there’s a couple of uncomfortable scenes so don’t watch with your mom unless you have a different kind of relationship with her than I have with mine. Anyways, as I’m apt to do while watching movies in my living room I Alta Vista’d it and was reading a little about the movie. It turns out that the girl in The Survivalist will be in a remake of Suspiria. Isn’t that weird? On my last post I was just telling you how I was watching Suspiria, the 1977 version. Now I learn there’s remake coming out.

A friend and I had talked about riding the entirety of the Katy Trail this weekend, but it didn’t pan out. We’ll, or at least I, will find another weekend to do it. It’s been a goal of mine to ride the entire 237.7 miles from start to finish. My friend has done it before, so it’s no big deal to him, but it’s still a bucket list item for me. I guess that’s why I’ve gotten back on the bike recently. I want to be ready when the time comes. It may not be smart to do the run in the late fall or winter, but hey, what else you gonna do? Or, I could wait until Spring. We’ll see.

I recognize that at some point I have to get the bike off the trainer, out of the garage, and on the road, but it’s such a hassle putting all those extension cords together for my blu-ray player. If I don’t get on the road soon I will have forgotten how to ride a bike, which everyone knows can be done.

fry bike

Actual picture of me riding my bike for the first time in a long time.

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On the Bike Again

Wow, it has been a long time since I rode a bike. The last recorded instance of me pedaling a bicycle was June 30, 2017. The time before that was December 3rd, 2016. Now, I know what you’re saying. “You’re not a real cyclist.” And, “You’re not a real triathlete.” I tend to agree with you. I am more of a pretend triathlete. As a matter of fact this whole summer passed and I didn’t even do one triathlon. Most of the summer I had the MR340 on my mind.

I also laid off running this year. I’ve ran relatively few miles since my last marathon in November 2016. In some ways I’m regretting it. It’s been tough getting back up to speed. When my easy pace was an 8:30 mile and now an 8:30 feels like a 10K pace it’s easy to doubt your strategy of taking a long break.

Do I even need to say swimming has been nil?

I said earlier I hadn’t been on a bike since June. Well, that was until today. I have picked up running again over the last two or three weeks and have been running six days a week. But today I just wasn’t feeling it and my knees were sore, so I set up the trainer and I rode for an hour. It was just an easy spin but I still ended up drenched in sweat as I’m ought to do when I ride in the garage.


Pictured above is my set up in the garage. I know, it looks pretty messy from that angle. I did just reorganize my peg board last weekend so cut me a little slack. I was watching a movie called Suspiria. It’s a 1977 horror movie. I got it because it’s an Italian move but it was all in English, so I’m not sure what’s going on there. I’ve watched quite a few Italian movies from my bike. Not recently of course, but last year I did. These include a number of Federico Fellini films. I’m sure there are some ‘normal’ Italian movies but I gravitate to the ones on the artsy-fartsy side. They’re usually pretty boring. You have to remind yourself that you are experiencing culture. Suspiria is pretty tame by today’s horror movie standards. I have a few minutes left so I’ll definitely have to get back on the trainer this week to see if our heroine survives the mysterious happenings at ballet school.

Just like while hitchhiking through the galaxy, whenever you ride the trainer you want to have a towel handy. That’s of course to soak up the copious amounts of sweat that pour off you. My towel is there on the handle bars. You may be tempted to ride topless but that is a mistake because then the sweat will have many more drip points and you don’t want all that salty brine dripping all over your bike.

With that thought I will say ciao. Or as Fellini would say with an abundance of wind noise and and some nudes painted silver in the background, good-bye.

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Opinions Are Like Doughnut Holes, Everybody Likes Them

I’m not sure I got that saying right, but as I was out running this morning I realized I had some opinions. And I very much like my opinions, so I guess in a way the title is correct; everybody likes their own opinions.

I’d like to tell you about a couple of my own opinions.

I live in a small town in west central Missouri. It’s a nice little town of 9,000. I guess given the history of the area and the history of Missouri you’re apt to see confederate flags flying from peoples’ houses around here. On our town square there is a statue of two soldiers, one Union and the other confederate. The inscription reads something like, “They fought bravely.” Now, don’t get the wrong impression, it’s not like every single house flies the confederate flag around here. There’s really just a few that I can think of on my various routes, but they’re there.

I spent my formative years in Ohio and Kansas, and growing up in those states I don’t ever remember seeing confederate flags. The only exposure I really had to the confederate flag was on the Dukes of Hazzard, which oddly enough, for a boy my age, was never one of my favorite shows. I always considered myself a Yankee and felt proud to be from a part of the country that fought to mend the Union, if not to ensure that all men lived free in these United States.

That’s not to say that I come from a long line of progressive woke liberals. Far from it. However, I always got the sense from the adults in my life that you ought to treat everyone the same. And it always seemed wrong to me that one man could own another man like a horse or a dog.

So when I see the confederate flag flying at a house I can’t help but think there’s someone who lives there who does not believe that all men are created equal. It’s just because of what that flag stood for not all that long ago in our nation’s history. And so I’m not a big fan of the confederate flag, but since I believe in freedom of expression, I support the right of those folks who may or may not believe the way I do when it comes to equality to fly those flags. However, I don’t believe any government entity, town, county, state, anything, should fly the confederate flag. It’s an insult and the confederacy lost. Take it down.


I assume this pic is a joke but I thought it was funny.

I feel the same way about the nazi flag. It’s particularly disgraceful to fly the nazi flag. What person in their right mind and who is not a degenerate bigot could hoist that banner?


old nazis, neo-nazis. What’s the difference?

So now I probably have a bunch of leftists saying, “Alright, I kinda like this guy.” But keep reading.

There’s this group right now running around in their ninja pajamas calling themselves the “antifa”, and supposedly they are anti-fascists. I can’t hardly say “antifa,” I have to call the them “fascist antifa.” Don’t dare have an opinion that isn’t theirs. They won’t like it, and I won’t say they resort to violence because violence seems to be one of their first options, and they will try to make you shut up. They really have a hard time with people who think thoughts that aren’t their own. They’re Orwell’s Thought Police.


fascist antifa

So when I see the fascist antifa clashing with the nazis I have the same question I have when the Broncos play the Steelers. Can’t they both lose?

I suppose both sides use the slippery slope argument, that if we allow them to make their argument or fly their flag or have their little march then the next thing we’ll be doing is putting people in shackles and selling them at auctions or strapping them down in a chair so that they can undergo the Ludovico Technique. It’s all kind of ridiculous.

What about the monuments? What about that confederate soldier on the square in my town? This gets a little more complicated for me. I don’t believe everything is black and white. In a lot of arguments I see shades of grey and that is not a popular position to hold. We all have to be for or against something, no middle ground, apparently. I guess my thought is this; If we start taking down monuments because the dude was a big jerk a lot of the time, where does it stop? Julius Caesar was a murderous slave-trading bastard if ever there was one, but should we topple all his statues? Who doesn’t get sick when they hear of isis destroying ancient statues? I don’t know. I can certainly see the point in removing the confederate soldier. Sure, he fought bravely. He fought so bravely to keep my forebears in chains. By all means, let’s honor his bravery. (Italics indicate sarcasm. I know leftists have a hard time detecting that.)


The inventor of the Caesar Salad, the Caesar cut, the Orange Julius, and the C-section. Hail Caesar!

“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”

That is my opinion and that is the opinion shared by my man St. Paul when he wrote to the Galatians.

He had a lot of opinions that I like:

“Owe no man anything, but to love one another.”

“As much as it depends on you, live at peace with all men.”

And let’s not forget the words of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ: “Do unto others…”

How would you like it if your neighbor flew the banner that represented the people who considered you mere property?

So there you have it, my doughnut hole.

PS. I know this is snarky but I failed to capitalize certain words throughout this post on purpose. All the other typos are the result of my neglectfulness and ignorance.

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