Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Log blog

I've been running at least semi-regularly since about 1992 (not including a couple of years being a sprinter on the track team in high school and lots of running around on the soccer pitch). However, I have only gotten serious about my running since around 2000. As an engineer by trade this means that I have been tracking it in a log. As a software engineer, it means I keep an electronic running log. I like to review my log entries, see how I have progressed over the years, re-live some of my more memorable runs and, of course, look at the stats. The log program I use (called "Runner's Log" of all things) is very old and no longer maintained. I've thought about upgrading to something newer, using one of the many web-based logs or actually writing my own program. However, it is so much simpler to just use what has been working for over 6 years.

The program generates a reasonable amount of statistics (distance, time, calories, pace, etc.) with pretty bar graphs that I can view on a weekly, monthly or overall basis. I try not to pay attention to pace except to note when it averages around 9:00 min/mile or lower which usually indicates that I have not been getting in enough serious trail runs (need to hit them hills). In general, I try not to obsess on it, but continue to enjoy looking at and reviewing various statistics and milestones. Aside from my races, the following milestones are one's I have recently reviewed or started looking forward to:

7 miles - Some time in 2000 I logged my first "long run" greater than this length. This is now about the shortest run I do in any given week.
2 hours - In 2001, I ran for nearly 2 hours on a 12 miler training for my first half marathon. I now consider 2 hours the start of a long run.
20 miles - My first 20 miler was run from Fremont to Pleasanton where I met my wife at her work. After a brief rest and change of clothes we went out for a burritos at El Balazo (mmm...).
Peaks - Runs up Mt. Tam, Mt. Diablo and my Big Loop run (from home, up and over Mission Peak, down to Ed Levin Park in Milpitas then back home) are all recorded. These runs were training targets as much as any of my races.
Destinations - Other memorable destination runs include running from Pleasanton to my parent's house in Concord (one day I want to do if from my house in Fremont), running from the middle of Yosemite Valley to the top of Vernal Falls on the 4th of July (eventually I plan to do the run all the way to Half Dome and back) and running from the south rim of the Grand Canyon to Phantom Ranch and half way back up before the temps reached triple digits forcing me to walk (R2R2R is definitely among my long-term goals).
6,000 miles - While my lifetime miles are probably 1-2 thousand longer, this is what I have recorded in the log. It was crossed at around mile 8 during the Big Basin Redwoods 50K race recently.
6,200 miles - The approximate distance across the US and back. Should be hit sometime in September.
1,000 runs - This milestone will also be hit sometime in the next few weeks.
1,000 hours - This one should be passed before the end of the year.
1,000,000 calories - If I keep on target this extremely important milestone will be crossed in the middle of next year. I have yet to decide what sort of crazy gluttonous feast I am going to celebrate with :-).


joyisonesfuel said...

hmm...giggle...yer a geek--but a happy smiling geek and I love it!!! journey onward.

olga said...

Great statistic to keep moving! I wish I had anything that sofisticated.

miki said...

ha ha. geek crossed my mind too. but see how useful it can be!!

wish I could be so organized. it's mighty cool to be able to look back and put things into perspective like that.