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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The 20MR Episode 33: Christmas run

Welcome to Episode 33. Join me as we go home to Wallace for Christmas, meet with the family and enjoy a windy 12 mile run the day after. I share some information about the run and the landmarks of the area, as well as an encounter with a very large bird, a Blue Heron.

We go through the same area that almost brought disaster 30 years ago during a horrific storm. It has been that long since I've run in that part of town. The dogs were out, but thankfully they were all either restrained or friendly. Once again, I am thinking of purchasing a hydration belt, but need your input on which one might be the best. Let me know your thoughts if you would. It would come in especially handy as we begin to get into the meat of the longer runs leading up to the marathon.

I share a marathon training update--so far so good. At this point, I am on track, but the real heart of the training is still just ahead. I do not want to get into the marathon without being fully ready. If you have run a marathon, please send me an email on your experience so that I can learn from it and also share your insights with other listeners.

There are also a couple of very short segments included from my family's Christmas dinner, as well as my sister sharing the recipe for Hungarian Goulash. If you've never had it, check out the recipe and let me know how you like it. It was one of my father's specialties and the first time I had eaten any in many years.

We close by talking about New Year's resolutions. While I don't make any personally, I do trust that your running goals and life's desires come true in 2010. I look forward to sharing with you in the months to come and appreciate you listening. Let me hear from you.

And as always,
Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

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Links mentioned in this episode

Runner's World magazine

Running Times magazine

The Writer magazine

American Heritage magazine

Samaritan's Purse

The photo above is courtesy of PhotoXpress.

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “The Long Goodbye," by Wendy Wall. Check it out at Music Alley.

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “The Christmas Song," by Calvin Owens. Check it out at Music Alley.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The 20MR Episode 32: Forming a Marathon plan, potassium questions and snow!



It's good to have you along for Episode 32, and week 2 of the marathon training. I actually had to record for this episode twice; the first audio was not clear enough to use. I explain why in this episode.

We talk about the plan for the marathon, including:
  1. Cross training plans
  2. Intervals/tempo runs
  3. The long run
  4. Tapering
  5. Potassium (what is it and do we need more of it during heavy training?)
  6. Expanding the core exercises as we prepare for 26.2 miles
  7. Potential plans to run a 5 or 10 K in the weeks leading up the marathon (if I can find one)
  8. I am considering recording some during the marathon. Your thoughts?
I include an update on how the training is going so far and talk a bit about the winter weather we've experienced recently. This run was actually in the dark on potentially dangerous "black ice," but we did not fall--fortunately. I did have to deal with four-wheelers and wet feet this past weekend after the snowfall. As a runner, I know you understand.

If you are viewing this in IE, you might want to switch to Firefox (or another browser). We are having technical issues with IE for some reason. If you use it, some blogs may not be shown or at best, be incomplete. I am working on it if I can figure out what is causing the problem.

Finally, stay tuned for episode 34. It will be a tribute to my late father who passed away January 3rd, 2005. The Marathon is for him...as well as for me.

You listening means more than I can adequately say. I sincerely thank you and ask that you tell other running friends about the podcast. I appreciate that as well. And finally,

Merry Christmas!!

And as always,
Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

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Listen to Episode 32 (click the player below)


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Links mentioned in this episode


Healthline.com

Dr. Gabe Mirkin

Colorado State


"Linus and Lucy" and "The 12 Days of Christmas" used in the body of the podcast are by J.E.L.L.i. and from the album "A Jolly J.E.L.L.i. Christmas." Check it out at Jamendo.com

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

Monday, December 14, 2009

The 20MR Episode 31: Marathon training begins, winter running


26.2




After a couple weeks away, I am glad to say, "Welcome to Episode 31". Family illness, weather, and the busyness of the season have all contributed to the delay, but we are now back on track, on the roads, and preparing for the marathon coming up March 20, 2010.

We talk about a lot of things, mostly related to running, during the episode. We begin by using my wardrobe of the day to describe the benefits of technical clothing, both for the colder months and the summer heat. In this day and age, cotton just doesn't get it any more and there are a myriad of materials to make our runs both more comfortable and ultimately safer. Wicking is where it's at and these new materials are the "real deal."

With all that sometimes goes on in life, missing training is to be expected. Listen in as we discuss how important it is to keep it going. There are a couple of rules worth remembering:
  1. You can never finish something if you never start.
  2. You can never finish something if you stop and never start again.
You've been there and so have I, but the key is to get up and get going again. Don't let missing a workout (or workouts) keep you from accomplishing your running--or life--goals during this busy season. If you expect the interruption(s), then you will be prepared for almost anything.

What about winter/cold weather running? With snow--and more critically ice--in the forecast for central North Carolina, there are indoor alternatives: biking, treadmill running, or some other indoor activity to keep you on the right track with your running goals. There are really no excuses...so get going! Winter is the time to maintain a base while throwing in some faster running about once a week. Those two things will keep you primed and ready for the Spring, warmer weather, and Summer races.

While a base and some faster running is really all that we should realistically be doing this time of year, I am breaking my own advice here as I am now officially training for the North Carolina Marathon. The race is only 15 weeks away and I have a good base on which to now build. Thanks for sharing the weeks to come with me. The weather and dark mornings will really test our resolve, but knowing you are along for the run will help it go easier.

The plans are to raise money for The American Lung Association at the marathon in memory of my father Samuel McDonald Cavanaugh. I need your input. If you have ever raised money for a charity by running a marathon, or any other race, LET ME HEAR FROM YOU. I desire your feedback on the experience and a nudge in the right direction about how to go about doing this. Also, be thinking about making a donation in March. I would be honored to mention your name on an upcoming episode as a contributor in the fight against Lung cancer and other respiratory diseases.

I also talk about podcast frequency. Although some podcasters are going to every other week, or even once a month, I still want to do a weekly show--or as close to that frequency as possible. If we fail to get a show out in 7 or 8 days, keep checking; I will eventually get the next show out--Lord willing.

There are also a couple of websites (non-running, but good sites just the same) that I talk about. Check out the links below; you'll be glad you did.

My nephew, Jason, has his first 5K coming up at Wrightsville Beach, NC on December 19th. Jason, I will be expecting a race report and remind you to "pick up the pace!"

Finally, I close this episode with a pep talk of sorts and encourage you to get up, get out and get moving. While running does not guarantee more years to your life, I can guarantee that it will add more life to your years. Keep moving for yourself...and those you love.

It's good to have you on board. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

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Other links mentioned in this episode

One More Mile Clothing

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff
book and gift pack

American Lung Association

My mp3va website

Paperback Swap Club website


The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Jalopy to Drive," by Hollywood Blue Flames. Check it out at Music Alley.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The 20MR Episode 30: Remembering who I'm thankful for...


(Pictured above are me, my mother, my brother Delwood, and his father/my stepfather, "Hoover"- taken about 1978 or 79)

We went back home to the place of my youth for Episode 30, a special Thanksgiving episode. Rather than going on a long run with you, this week was a bit shorter: eight miles through Wallace. Go with me as I briefly describe the landmarks that were a part of my life growing up, from "Santa's (little) house" on Main St. to the funeral home that handled my late step-father's arrangements 27 years ago.

Going home always brings out the reminiscent spirit in me; it probably does for you also. And during the holidays, those memories are even stronger in my mind. My step-father raised me from the age of about 9 until his death when I was 19. He was 50.

Hoover was the epitome of what a "father" should be. Though he was by no means perfect (are any of us?), he did those things that a good father should do: he taught me how to fish, how to raise livestock and even how to make fresh sausage and "souse meat." And yes, I do briefly describe all of those experiences and more. A Korean veteran, he was all about hard work and taking care of family. Traits that are often missing in our present world...

Part of home includes fire ants. If you are not aware of these little wonders, get ready to be educated. You are probably just as well to not know about them, but they are a part of life in our area of the world.

We close with a short tempo session and a good sprint to the stop sign. Can you make it? Listen in as I give advice to my nephew Jason about his first 5K. Consistency and determination are vital to racing success. I know you already realize that.

Finally, I want to challenge you to thank that person (or persons)--living or dead--who have made an impact on your life. We never know when the chance is over. This session is about saying goodbye yet again, after almost three decades.

So, I hope your turkey and pie are behind you as you lace up your shoes and run with me once again. I am so glad to have you along. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

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Listen to Episode 30 (click the player below)

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The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “The Long Goodbye," by Wendy Wall. Check it out at Music Alley.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com




Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The 20MR Episode 29: Listener request: what I like and dislike, email responses

Episode 29 is mainly about you, the listener, though it also includes information about me--per your request. Go with me on the weekly long run as I talk about things that I like...and dislike. I am always a bit hesitant to share a lot about myself. I want this podcast to be about running...and life. However, as I promised ( and always will promise), I will respond to all of your emails, some of them during an episode of The 20 Minute Runner when the situation warrants. This is one of those episodes.

While I won't give details here, I do tell you a bit about myself on this run, especially my likes and dislikes. I try not to be too self-effacing, but do want to respond to your input. Again, I love listener email and honestly thank you for responding! Keep them coming.

MY LIKES (NOT exhaustive)
  1. Reading
  2. Writing
  3. Arithmetic (just kidding on that one)
  4. Community
  5. Serving others
  6. Animals
  7. Brussel Sprouts/Mexican/Chinese/Kraut (you get the picture...)
  8. My wife, actually I love her as well :)
  9. Podcasting, receiving listener email
  10. Photography
  11. Family
MY DISLIKES (NOT exhaustive)
  1. Arrogance
  2. Self-centeredness
  3. Being unable to run
  4. Having to deal with grieving families
  5. Rutabagas
We close by hearing a few more emails and sharing a recent race report from a listener, David. His report is also included on the "Listener Race Report" blog, see the link at the left.

As I type this, we are preparing for the Thanksgiving Holiday. I sincerely trust that yours is safe and enjoyable as you spend it with family and friends. Send me your likes, dislikes and what you are thankful for. I will share them in an upcoming episode. And, as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

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Other links mentioned in this episode

Order a copy of my book For As Long As I Can, A Son's Memoir of His Father's Dying Request from Amazon (benefits Hospice)

Long Ridge Writer's Group
(course)

First Wesleyan Church

The music heard in the body of the podcast (and the background) is entitled “Long Ride Home," by John Williams. Check it out at Magnatune Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The 20MR Episode 28: Podcasting 101 or "How to start your own..."


Welcome to Episode 28 of The 20MR. As always, I am honored to have you along. As I have said many times: If you were all of a sudden not listening, then this effort would truly be in vain.


We begin this run in the dark, literally, not figuratively--at least as far as I can tell. The stars and moon were beautiful on this early morning venture. But the sun eventually shines and we get into this, a ten-mile run. After a few days away--due to Hurricane Ida--we are back on the road. Listen is as I share about the dreary weather and the challenges it poses for running. While I know there are ways to run in 48 degrees F in the rain, I have never chosen to do so. Those days are few and far between--thankfully.


As we begin marathon training in about 3 weeks, I share what that interim looks likes. While I am completely rested from the half in October, I still do not want to push it, at least just yet. But that day is coming. Having trained for races before, I know you can identify.


Steven has just started his own podcast: "The Devoted Runner." It is a real privilege to share some of the first episode's audio with you. Steven has a clear angle for his show and I am looking forward to all of the episodes. That thought dovetails into a large portion of what we discuss in this episode of The 20MR: How to start your own podcast. Now, while I know everyone does not have the time...or desire...to begin their own show, maybe you have been toying with the idea. As Matt of Run Digger Run told me months ago: "We can never have too many running related podcasts." Whether you intend to start one or not, perhaps you will find the process interesting. I have had a few emails asking me to share how it is done, so I know there is interest. As I stated a few episodes ago, however, I am only an amateur. But I will always tell you what I know about any topic of interest and what my experience has been. You do not have to be a "techie" to produce a show. I wish Steven much success.


After the "Podcasting 101" discussion, we close the show by throwing out the idea that you might want to record some of your runs for posterity's sake--whether you ever make them public or not. It could be a meaningful and interesting legacy to leave to your children...or others. Think about it.


Finally, I had one of the biggest complements I have had, recently. Someone said the show was as much a diary of my life as a motivational show on running. I wholeheartedly agree and am becoming more and more convinced that that angle is what makes the show appealing to many. I also want to thank YOU for pushing the show over a substantial threshold last week. We crossed a new barrier for number of subscribers. I am honored...and humbled.


Hope your running is going great and as always,


Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,

The 20 Minute Runner



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Other links related to this episode


The Devoted Runner Podcast


Sony digital recorder I use


Podbean hosting


Audacity editing software

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Take Time for the Tub," by Derek K. Miller. Check it out at Music Alley.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The background music is entitled “Afternoon in the Sun.” It is by John Williams, from his album “Long Road Home.” Check it out at Magnatune.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

T20MR Episode 27: Life's a beach/all things nautical


































Although I am now back in the office, we recorded this, Episode 27, while on vacation at Holden Beach, NC. And while we run in most of the episode, we also talk about a variety of topics that happen to come up, including--but not limited to:
  • Hurricanes and their impact on my life and my family through the years
  • Gill net fishing: How to do it and what it actually is
  • The importance my late step-dad played in my life during my teen years, including teaching me how to fish for such great fare as spots, croakers, and the occasional mullet, oh my!
  • We go to The Seafood Hut at Calabash, "The Seafood Capital of the World." They have, beyond question, the best fried seafood on the East Coast (I know, fried foods are bad, but it is the only way to eat a shrimp--at least a few times a year). The place where you can't get anything broiled, and baked potatoes are a "no-no"
  • Sammy is recovering from surgery; I share an update
  • Our discussion goes to the bigger, philosophical reasons for running. The main idea: Running may not add years to your life, but it certainly will add life to your years.
We close by talking about the need to sloooow down... Do you feel the need to do so? Getting in a few days several times a year at the beach--or your favorite "quiet" place--is so critically important for our physical and emotional health. If you are a type A or a workaholic, I invite you to stop and listen to the ocean with me in this episode (Yes, we literally stop and listen to the ocean).

All in all, I hope you find your running, and this episode, relaxing. If you can't get away for time at the beach, lace up your shoes and run with me along the shore. But be sure and watch out for the sand spurs. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

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The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.

The piece heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Beach Drive." by Chris Godber. Check it out at Music Alley.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

T20MR Episode 26: Thanks and "Dog Protection Tactics 101"



Welcome to Episode 26. As we make our way through 25 more episodes--hopefully--I thank you for sharing the journey with me. I open this show by sharing my thoughts about things up to this point and what my plans are for the future of the podcast. It is also my privilege to say "Thank you" for your support during the last several months. Whether you are a new listener, or have run through every episode, without you listening, this endeavor would truly be pointless and not work. So, after a few minutes of contemplation...we run.

After a close encounter with a dog--well, sort of close--our thoughts turn to ways to protect ourselves from our canine "friends." Now I am a dog lover (and animal lover in general). But sometimes we have to really be on our guard to protect ourselves if such an occasion arises. I offer a few suggestions during the running portion of this episode and also share a funny story when I had the "4 second burst of superhuman energy" that we discussed last week. If you are concerned about a close encounter of the canine kind, consider the following:


  1. Don't run an unfamiliar route at night (make sure to try out a new route in the daytime first).

  2. Take some protective precautions: carry a weak bleach solution, or even a stick. We discuss how to use it in the podcast.

  3. If that doesn't work, stand your ground and act crazy!

  4. Last resort: Run. Unless you know you can outrun the dog, then that is crazy!

  5. If attacked, protect your neck and head.

  6. Carry your phone with you. Even if you are attacked, you should be able to hit speed dial if necessary. Hopefully the owner, or at least someone else, will be near to offer assistance.

  7. Finally, run relaxed. A dog can sense when he has the "upper hand." If you express confidence, the dog can also sense that.

  8. (One more suggestion that I failed to discuss: act like you are picking up something to throw. Believe it or not, it really works. Ironically, I just had to use that tactic this morning (along with number 3). Thankfully, I am just fine. )

Let me hear your canine encounter story. Email it or send me an mp3 or wav file. I will include it in the show. Hope your training is going well and the dogs are behaving. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,

The 20 Minute Runner


Download this episode (right click and save)

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The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.

The first piece heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Sleepaway," by Rob Costlow. Check it out at Music Alley.

The last piece heard in the body of the podcast is entitled "My Dog's Still Walkin," by Smokin Joe Kubek and Bnois King. Check it out at Music Alley.

Monday, October 26, 2009

T20MR Episode 25: The big "25", recovery and our wonderful bodies



This episode finds us marking a milestone: Episode 25. It's really hard to believe that we have been at it now for six months. The ride has been fun, challenging and rewarding; at least it has for me. From the comments and emails during the past months, we seem to be hitting our stride--and the mark, based on your--the listener's--comments.

Let me thank you for being there. This podcast gets nowhere in a hurry without listeners. I cannot express how important you are in this endeavor. While I have a passion for doing the show, without you tuning in to hear my ramblings each week, it would be fairly pointless. I do NOT enjoy hearing myself talk that much!

For this episode, you go with me on not one, but two runs. Also, I get a little playful with the audio (all I will say is that is has something to do with Looney tunes). Check out the episode to see what I mean. As for this week's content, we cover several things, some with meat, some with fluff. But it's fun. We cover:

  • Sore legs and easing back into the running life after the half marathon
  • Running with the cat (I know, sounds weird, but take a listen; it's pretty funny)
  • Lessons from running that apply to life in general, including learning that you can do anything you set your mind to if you prepare properly
  • Learning what our limitations are in life and running
  • Our wonderful bodies, including examples of people who defy the odds and amaze us with what their bodies did when the going got really rough
I also give you an update on where things are and where we're headed, all while finishing up a very difficult long run. Again, I am able to continue with the running--and the podcast--because I know you share in the passion for both.

Running is obviously something that means a lot to you even as it does to me. I want to encourage you to go as hard as you reasonably can and push your body to its limit. In the process, you will find more joy and fulfillment than you may realize at this point. What's true of running is also true of life. It's great to have experienced the last 25 episodes with you and hopefully many more to come.

So, whether you are a listener from the beginning, or just checking out the show for the first time: I APPRECIATE YOU SPENDING SOME TIME WITH ME! And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The Twenty Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

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The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. The entire piece is heard this week in the body of the podcast. Check it out at Jamendo.

The sound effect of the scratching record was obtained from Freesound and contributed by Halleck. It is used under a Creative Commons License. You can find the link here.

Monday, October 19, 2009

T20MR Episode 24: My First Half Marathon, The Cannonball Run race coverage
























It's hard to believe, but the training for the 1/2 is over and we tackle The Cannonball Half Marathon in Episode 24. It's time to see if the hard work and weeks of preparation paid off.

We begin by running the final tempo run together as I assess how I am feeling a few days before the race. Running updates are also included in the discussion leading up to the half.

From the tempo run, we get the car packed as I share some last-minute thoughts about the training, the rest (or lack thereof) and my expectations for the race itself. And then...it's off to the race.

I ended up running better than expected: 1:42:29. That's about 2:31 faster than what I should have been ready for. However, I ran within my means and felt great, even on the long hill at mile 11. The half is much different than a 5, or even 10 K. You have time to converse and take it all in. The Cannon Ball run was one of the most scenic--and hilly--courses I have ever attempted, but the training paid off.

We close with a couple of emails and the plans for the coming weeks, including another 5K towards the end of October--if I feel rested enough. Be sure and check out the pictures from the race at the slide show to the left. Thanks to my nephew Austin, and Cindy, my wife for taking most of them. Austin is quickly becoming my "racing groupie." Hope he doesn't mind that tag being attached to him.

The half has shown me that we can achieve what we put our minds to if we will take our time and use a disciplined strategy to do so. The same is true for you. What are your running goals? What goals are you wanting to accomplish in life? You can achieve them regardless of your age if you will set a plan and stick to it. I want to thank you for listening to the show. Please share the information with other runners; I appreciate it. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

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The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “The Race," by The Goldstars. Check it out at Music Alley.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.

The transitional piece(s) is entitled "Summer Revisited" and is by Chris English. Check it out at Music Alley.

Monday, October 12, 2009

T20MR Episode 23: Tapering--beneficial or bust? Life is (a) fair

With one more week left before my first 1/2 marathon, I am in tapering mode as we run together in Episode 23. But is tapering really beneficial? Or is tapering simply a cop-out? We discuss the pros--and few cons--of the issue in this episode. If you are preparing for a fall race, you'll want to hear what I've discovered about tapering; it just might help you PR at your target race.

The episode, however, begins with an update on the week's running. It's been a good one as we close in on the 1/2 marathon. Not only was it a good one running, but we are looking forward to the N. Carolina football game next weekend. Go Heels! But, that's later. We begin with a trip to the Dixie Classic Fair in Winston-Salem, complete with chickens, racing pigs and state-record pumpkins. Grab a sausage-dog and listen in. Life is about keeping perspective--and balance. The proper mix of both keeps us young. How young do you feel? Running plays a big part of that mix as well.

The second half is all about tapering. While I won't give the details here, you go along with me on a challenging 10 miler, all the while discussing the benefits of tapering. We include a list of "Who's Who," and how they benefited from tapering: Carlos Lopes (1984 Olympic Marathon champion), John Benoit Samuelson (1984 Women's Marathon Olympic champion and American Record Holder at the time), Emil Zatopek (1950 European champion in both the 5,000 and 10,000) and Sir Roger Bannister (need I tell you what he accomplished?).

Thanks to Scott at Off'nRunning for his help in promoting the podcast. They get a shout-out for the work they do at timing so many area races, including the Cannonball half we will run on the 17th.

Finally, be sure to vote for your favorite podcast(s) at the link above, whether it happens to be T20MR or some other show. Regardless, vote!

I feel good about the 1/2 and have trained properly for distance and speed. Stay tuned to see how it all turns out. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

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The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Forever Young," by Ghosts on the Radio. Check it out at Music Alley.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.

The article on tapering by Abhinabha Tangerman can be found here.

Monday, October 5, 2009

T20MR Episode 22: Benefits of GPS devices, 17 miles, and running with scissors (I mean, glasses)

Welcome to Episode 22. I appreciate you tagging along with me. The ride has been a fun one and we look forward to many more. Without you, it simply would not work--thank you for going with me.

We begin the episode with an update on the last seven days. We ended up with the highest week yet when you factor in the run we cover in this episode: 37+ miles. I actually feel pretty good after a heavy week in preparation for the half, but my quads are a bit sore. But, it shall pass. I ran for the first time with glasses this week. A new strap makes the experience quite comfortable and I can see my watch! Running blind is not a favorite pastime for me; running with glasses is definitely doable. I have been pleasantly surprised.

Speaking of watches, I talk about the watch I use, pictured above. It is a GPS model and has lots of bells and whistles, none more important than the countdown timer. We talk about that feature and how useful it can be, especially during speed training. If your watch has a countdown timer, you really need to investigate using it. You'll be glad you did.

The NC Marathon is March 20th, six weeks earlier than the original May date. That means training needs to begin the first full week of December. I share my thoughts on what the training will include and welcome your insights to a first time marathoner: me. While I "want to finish," I also want to finish strong. But enough of that, we need to get through the Cannonball Half first. That comes up October 17th.

The episode wraps up with the conclusion of the run, my second longest ever and the longest in over 30 years. We covered just over 17 miles in this, the longest run I will do before the half. We will finish our preparations with some speedwork...and rest. While I hope to break 1:45 for the half, again, time will tell. My training, however, has gone well and I feel ready for a good effort.

Again, your interest in the show makes it worthwhile. Let me hear from you. Send me an email; include your most recent race report/photos/audio clip. We will share them on an upcoming episode. I trust that your training is going well. And, as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Big Cigar," by David Parker. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The theme from the original Star Trek series is used courtesy of audio micro.com.

For a great deal, check out the Timex Ironman 100 Lap Triathlon Speed/Distance - 5E701, like I use, at Runnersgear.com.

Monday, September 28, 2009

T20MR Episode 21: Dealing with triggers, using a countdown timer, condolences


Episode 21 is in the books. We begin by sharing an update on how the week has gone. As of the end of this run, we managed to cover just over 20 miles for the week; next week should be back up to around 30 or a bit more. The short week is because I missed one run this week due to the busyness of life, something with which I'm sure you can identify. We also talk about the tendency to beat ourselves up when our training takes a brief detour. Three words: Don't do it. Get back with it the next time you are scheduled to run and let it go. Your program will not fail because you miss a run...or two. Just make sure to get back with it as soon as you can.

Sometimes, there are "triggers" that affect our performance or what we do in particular situations. Triggers can lead to downfalls, whether in training or life. Identify what triggers your times of struggle, name it, deal with it. Triggers are a part of addiction, whether it be drugs, relationships or a myriad of other things. When you name your trigger(s), you can better make sure that "A" does not lead to "B". Tell someone about that thing that causes you to struggle and let it go.

Are you running a Fall race? 5K, 10K? Half, or full marathon? Send me your report and share it with our listeners. Thanks to David for his recent half report and success on the race. Check out the Listener Race Reports Link to the left for his report. You, too can reach your running--and life--goals if you will practice discipline and give yourself time.

Betsey sent an email about how to begin an exercise program. We give some advice to her on how to do just that. Again, discipline and time are the main ingredients.

We close by discussing some new features I've identified on my GPS watch, including the countdown timer. This feature is very helpful and I hope to begin incorporating it in my speedwork. If your watch has the feature and you aren't using it, maybe you need to familiarize yourself with it. I am still learning. I also have prepared my split sheet for the half next month. I hope to break 1:50 (1:45 would be a best case scenario goal).

Finally, our condolences go out to Matt at Run Digger Run. He recently lost his dad after a long battle with cancer. My father died with lung cancer almost five years ago. Hang in there Matt; time will make things better...eventually. Check out episode 12 for our discussion on loss. I think it will be helpful to anyone experiencing loss, be it running or the death of a person close to you in your life.

So, episode 21 is a mixed bag, but I trust you will find it motivating and encouraging. Remember: we are all on this journey together. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Running the Red Lights," by David Hein. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

Sunday, September 20, 2009

T20MR Episode 20: Warren Rives 5K Race coverage, getting ready for the half




















It's hard to believe that we are up to Episode 20, but here we are. The ride has been fun and fulfilling, especially with you along. I have more ideas for upcoming episodes and welcome your feedback. Please email me at: 20minuterunner@gmail.com.

This episode finds the WRs 5K at the heart of it, surrounded by thoughts about the race both before and after the event is over. My wife has been in the hospital recently, but is improving. We appreciate your thoughts and prayers for her. Her condition could have been much more serious--but it was serious enough.

We begin by taking a walk with Odie and Tigger (the community cat). Odie has a way with animals and people alike. That's why we call him "The Cat Whisperer." I share a problem I'm having physically and ask for your advice. I give you one clue here: crickets. After you listen to the episode, please let me know if you have any ideas.

It was so good to have my nephew Austin with me at the race (Sammy's son, seen with yours truly above--listen to episode 9 to learn about my oldest brother). Though he got lost on the way, Austin made it right after we finished the race. Listen in as we chat about the race and how difficult it is to find your way around High Point. (I've added a few photos from the race to the 2009 Race Photos slideshow on your left that we took with Austin's camera as well.) There are also a couple of links below featuring NC New 14's coverage; they are a sponsor of the event.

I close by reflecting on the race and its implications. I ran 22:17 and placed 5th out of 19 in my age group, 42nd of 312 for the entire 5K. That's about 38 seconds faster than I have run in over 30 years. Needless to say, I am very pleased. I want to encourage you to reach your goals--whether in running...or life. All it takes is two things: time AND discipline. This episode ends with a pep-talk as it were: YOU CAN REACH YOUR RUNNING GOALS! I feel very blessed to be reaching mine and am beginning to realize that I can accomplish more than I may have originally thought. Time will tell.

This episode is mostly about the race and how anyone--including you--can achieve your own success based on what that means to you personally. I think you will be encouraged and entertained. I appreciate you listening. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Nobody Here but Me in Blue," by Kelly's Lot. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The transitional piece is from the song, "SunSpark" by Dan-O. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The background music is entitled “Afternoon in the Sun.” It is by John Williams, from his album “Long Road Home.” Check it out at Magnatune.

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Other links related to this episode:

High Point Regional Medical Center

Carolina's Diner

Warren Rives 5K Race Results

NC News 14 nterview with High Point Bank spokesperson (The bank is a sponsor)

NC News 14 video coverage of the Warren Rives 5K

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

T20MR Episode 19-Fall begins: Warren Rives 5K Race Director Interview, new features at the blog

Episode 19 begins with an interview with Alana Holyfield, the director of the Warren Rives Heart Strides 5K held each September in High Point. I appreciate Alana taking some time to share what the race benefits and some of the details about how it all comes together. Now in its 23rd running, the race is going strong. We plan to run the race on the 19th. Alana also agreed to help promote T20MR podcast even as we help her to promote the race. A good working relationship.

We discuss a first for me (at least in 30 years), a 30 mile week. We ended up covering almost 36 miles for the week, a record in my second age of running. While I thought the down week each month would not happen with the 1/2 marathon training schedule, in reality, the week coming will be short: about 15 miles. It will include, however, a tempo run and a race. After this light week, we will hit the ground hard leading up to the 1/2.

I also reflect on the long run. It is absolutely critical for any successful training program, whether your long run is 6, 8, or 15 miles: Make it happen! Speedwork also has its place as well. But like everything else, you must work into it gradually and give yourself time to get there. Do not grow impatient. Mark is just getting into the habit of exercise. Hear my advice to him about how long he should give himself. The advice applies to all of us, including yours truly.

Also, take a minute and explore a couple of new features on this blog page: the search bar and some issues I need your input on. Send me an email if you have thoughts about the issues I list. I will add to it as new things develop.

We close by discussing briefly the role of animals in our lives and how we need to slow down as we drive! Odie and I lost a neighborhood friend because someone simply drove too fast. May we all do our part to make the roads safe for humans...and animals alike.

This episode was a lot of fun putting together. I encourage your feedback and email. Let me hear from you! And, as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “The No Tantric Woman Woman Blues INSTRUMENTAL," by happyron. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The transitional piece is from the song, "SunSpark" by Dan-O. Check it out at Mevio Music.

Stamey's Barbeque


Photo copyright, Carol Bean, 2009, FreeLargePhotos.com

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

T20MR Episode 18-To boldly run longer than I have ever run before...







Welcome to Episode 18. We cover a lot of ground, literally. You come along for the ride as I embark on my first attempt at 2 hours and 15 minutes (What? Am I crazy or what?) You decide.

We discuss everything from the latest gear I have on to how running can help us deal with recovery by giving a sense of accomplishment and discipline, not to mention giving us goals to reach towards--always a good thing.

Follow me as we get chased by dogs, eat Jelly Beans "live" and talk to my wife on the telephone (exciting stuff, I know). We close with the news that there has been a rash of car robberies in our neighborhood--never a good thing. Keep your doors locked and your valuables out of sight.

I also give an update on how the training is going for the half. I am using a modified version of the Hal Higdon training routine. We discuss how the canning is going with the peppers. Odie also has a cameo above lurking behind my fig bush--which we also briefly discuss.

And while I have a new pair of shoes, I won't be wearing them right away. I do have some good advice, however, about ordering your next pair that you will want to hear.

This evening run ended up being right at 15 miles, the longest I have run since I started back 13 months ago and the second longest ever; it was actually a good one. But as the darkness descends and it becomes harder to see the road, a bit of my heart sinks as well: Summer is coming to a close. But...Fall (my favorite time of year) is just around the corner, filled with cool mornings and shorts and gloves (what a neat combination).

So, it's good to have you with me for this long late-summer run. I am so glad you have joined me "to boldly run longer than I have ever run before..." If you enjoy the podcast, why not tell a friend? I would appreciate it. Thank you for listening. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,

The 20 Minute Runner


The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Wake Up," by Kim Cahill. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com


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Links mentioned in this episode


Endless (great place to order shoes)

Robin Parrish's homepage, author of Offworld (and a personal friend)

Monday, August 31, 2009

T20MR Episode 17-Would you like caffeine with that long run?








In Episode 17, you go with me on the weekly long run, in this case 13.16 miles. It is obvious that we can cover the 1/2 distance coming up in several weeks, but can I run the 1:45 we mention in this episode? After this hot effort, I'm not sure...but I think I can do it.

The two photos above of myself were taken at a day retreat the staff took this week. We went to Lake Norman, NC, where we swam, rode Seadoos and I had the priviledge of gaining the title "Tubing King!" After everyone else had had enough, I went for a couple of spins solo. And while I was eventually thrown off, I managed to ride some pretty high wakes from the boat. It was a blast and a much needed break. Everyone enjoyed the time away, even if it was just for the day.

A good portion of this episode is spent discussing caffeine: pros and cons. In moderation, it can actually boost athletic performance. Rather than list the information here, I'll let you hear the discussion during the run. I will say this, however: If you do not use caffeine during your races or long runs, you might want to consider it. You'll learn more in the podcast itself.

Finally, by the time you read this and listen to the episode, I will have turned 46. While it's hard to figure where the years went, I must admit I feel as good as ever, regardless of my age. I think we limit ourselves mentally more than physically. Our bodies will do much more than we think--if we can convince our head that this is possible. I want to encourage you to pursue your running dream--and other dreams for that matter--regardless of your age. Age is relative.

I have enjoyed this episode and trust you will find it motivating and encouraging as well. Thank you for being with me. Send me an email! And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Coffee," by Adam Balbo. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The article by Dr. Alex M. McDonald on the effects of caffeine can be found here.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

T20MR Episode 16-10K Rock Race Report





















Episode 16 is all about the race I ran this past weekend. It proved to be very warm and hilly. The fact that we only had water at about the 1.5 mile mark and then about 4 miles later only added to the difficulty of the effort.

I was pleasantly surprised, however, to finish in 47:48 (PR), 1:30 ahead of my last 10K (in Greensboro). While I have run a 37:15 10K(in my teens, longer ago than I care to remember), this race marks the best time since I began running just over a year ago. A hard effort, but it was worth it. I finished 7th overall (out of 35), but still only placed 5th in my age group, proving that there are lots of 40-49 year old guys who can still move!

Also, we added a few photos to the Races of 2009 slideshow to the left; I hope you enjoy them. The video below is of the beginning of the race and includes a couple of annotations that YouTube provides--I'm still learning about the technical aspects of all of this, but trust that that knowledge brings you a better media experience.

Email me a photo, along with a race report of your most recent race. Feel free to include a short mp3 or wav file as well. I will post the picture and report and may play the audio in an upcoming episode. Let me hear from you!

I trust your training is going well. Thank you for listening. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)
_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Horse Ride Through the Land," by Marieva's Project. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The transitional piece(s) is from the song, "Sweet Swing" by Trafic de Blues. Check it out at Jamendo.com


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Links mentioned in this episode

YWCA of High Point

Race map of the 10K

10K race results

(Move your cursor over the squares that appear in the video for a brief description--you have to be fast)!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Episode 15-Losing the Training Effect


















Have you ever had to hang up your running shoes for a season, due to injury or illness? In Episode 15, we discuss the implications of a temporary layoff. I was forced to miss seven days of running recently: not one step. It wasn't easy, but we got through it.

The time off the roads got me thinking: How long does it take to begin losing the training effect that I had worked so hard to achieve--and maintain? How much would I lose in that week, if any?

After researching the topic, we discuss the facts. If you are on a layoff, I think you will actually be encouraged. Even more interesting is that our discussion takes place on the first run back from the layoff, a simple experiment in the flesh as it were.

We actually lose very little conditioning in one week. It takes several weeks to make a real dent in the base we have established with regular running. We share the details in this episode. Take hope: a layoff may be a gift in disguise, as we discuss.

But how do you know if you are actually needing a break, especially when the break is not dictated by obvious illness or injury? There are several indicators that may be hinting at some time off, including--but not limited to

  • Fatigue

  • Soreness that won't go away

  • Dreading the workout, irritability

  • Poor performance

  • No progress with running goals

  • Boredom or not being motivated

  • You just can't stand the thought of having to run

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, maybe you need a break. A week (or a bit more) won't spell the end of the world. Listen in as we talk about it.

I hope you are running well and not having any of the issues we discuss. I appreciate you running with me. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The Twenty Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Feels Like the End," by Shane Alexander. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The transitional guitar piece is from the song, "The Sky Below" by Shane Alexander. Check it out at Mevio Music.

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Links mentioned in this episode

Phedippidations Podcast by Steve Runner, celebrating 200 episodes

New Balance 769 running shoes (cushioning and mild stability)

**For the article on training effect and how long it takes to lose it, click here.
(Yes, those are my 768s)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Episode 14-Home again, Interview with my mom, Bar-B-Q 101




Episode 14 was recorded "down east" in North Carolina. On a trip home, we record while on the weekly long run.

While this episode is not as heavy as some recently, I know you will find it interesting. We begin by discussing the difference between Eastern style Bar-B-Q and Lexington style Bar-B-Q (yes, them's fightin' words!) While we explain the difference, I also made a couple of Bar-B-Q restaurant recommendations if you are in North Carolina and want to sample either--or both.

My mother and I also sit down under her carport and have a discussion about my early life and the impact running played as I adjusted to life living with her, my half-brother and my step-dad. My step-dad played a very important role in my life during my teen years.

We close things out by winding up the long run. It was a good one and I felt great. I hope your training is going well also. I appreciate you listening.

Send me an email with (or without) an audio file. Let me hear from you. Your participation is what makes this work and I enjoy hearing from you, the listener. Why not take a moment now and send me a question or comment, or information on your most recent race (including photos). I will post the photos and try to share your questions or comments on the show.

Hope your week is a good one. Be careful in the heat. And as always,

Thanks for sharing some of the road with me,
The 20 Minute Runner

Download this episode (right click and save)

_________________________

The music heard in the body of the podcast is entitled “Get Back Home to You," by Ana Popovic. Check it out at Mevio Music.

The opening and closing music heard in each podcast is entitled “Point of No Return” by Roger Subirana and is the title cut of the album. Check it out at Jamendo.com

The background music is entitled “Afternoon in the Sun.” It is by John Williams, from his album “Long Road Home.” Check it out at Magnatune.

The transitional guitar piece is from the song, "The Sky Below" by Shane Alexander. Check it out at Mevio Music.


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Links mentioned in this episode

Holy Smoke: The Big Book of North Carolina Barbecue by John Shelton Reed, Dale Volberg Reed, and William McKinney

Wilber's Bar-B-Q (Eastern style, Goldsboro, NC)

Lexington Bar-B-Q (Lexington style, Lexington, NC)

Honey Stinger gels homepage

**Picture credit: I took the photo above in the front yard of my mother's house in Wallace several years ago. It is one of my favorites of us together...


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When sending email, please include your first name, city/state or country. Your email may be shared on a podcast. Also, feel free to send me a short mp3 or wav audio file. I might play it during a podcast. Your comments are always welcome.