Monday, 30 April 2012

The 10 Words Challenge

MoCh - Challenge #1 April 2012 - The 10 Words Challenge

Inspired by Matt Cutts' 30 days challenges I've decided to try the same concept myself as well. I'll start one new challenge each new month. Since I started my first Monthly Challenge a few days into April it was not a full length challenge, but I did a few bonus tasks to compensate. I started writing this post on the 5th of April and it'll be published when the challenge is over.

My first Monthly Challenge (MoCh), the April Challenge 2012 was initially to write one 10 words poem every day. However it became a mixture of poems, stories and sayings, so I've called it The 10 Words Challenge. It should all be 10 words, that do fit together, one way or another. The results can be viewed below.

April 5th:
The world as you knew it was turned upside down.

April 6th:
When the end comes it is too late to change.

April 7th:
The sun is shining. The sky is blue. Running next.

April 8th:
The emptiness of an empty cup of coffee is stifling.

April 8th bonus:
Do not look back. Keep on walking. Live life now.

April 9th:
The notion of sadness comes. You have left. Remember it.

April 10th:
He closed his eyes. Made a deep breath. And jumped.

April 11th:
On, Off, On, Off... "Stop playing with the light switch!"

April 12th:
Sleep, Work, Exercise, Eat, Write, Watch, Read, Listen, Relax, Repeat.

April 13th:
Irritation, anger, bad conscience. In that order. Family sometimes sucks.

April 14th
Close your eyes. Hold your breath. Sink. Open your eyes.

April 15th
The universe just wanted it this way. I had to!

April 16th
Exhausted and tired. The sun sets. Darkness rises once again.

April 17th
"One or two?", the waitress asked? "Only me", I answered.

April 18th
We are needed. We have to move together, for life.

April 18th bonus:
Faith can never be changed, no matter what you do.

April 18th bonus:
With some extra effort we are where we should be.

April 18th bonus:
A taste of gold. A heart of salt. Mixed up.

April 19th
The more you learn, the harder it gets. Keep going!

April 20th:
All the energy just disappeared. Did someone pull the plug?

April 21st:
Lay down. Give up. There is no hope, no future.

April 22st:
Freedom, from the life that everyone expected you to have.

April 23rd:
My dream girl. I met her. She smiled. At me.

April 24th:
Right now it is far too late. I better sleep.

April 25th:
Run fast, run far, run slow, run short. Single minded?

April 26th:
Exploit the weaknesses. Crack it all open. Rip it apart.

April 27th:
They spread fear. Everyone hates them. No one stops them.

April 28th (written on the 29th):
I forgot. I admit. However I am doing one now.

April 29th:
Time flies faster and faster for every day that pass.

April 30th:
And then it was over. Another month of my life.


May Challenge 2012:
And now I'm ready for a new challenge, the May challenge with the name "Less Social, More Sleep". The rules of my new challenge are:
- Do not use or log into Facebook, Google+, Foursquare or any other social media on the phone, computer or what have you got (Twitter and Instagram are allowed).
- Be in bed by 10 pm before every workday. I can read but have to close my eyes by 11 pm at the latest.

A full summary of the new challenge will come in the beginning of June.

Those who share

As I've been working on www.runners.no I've made a few discoveries about "those who share".

1 : Norwegian runners blog in the evening, after dinner and before they go to bed. Normally they publish their blog post just before 10pm. There are some that even blog before 7 am. And at night they do sleep.

Time of day for publishing.

2 : Norwegian runners prefer Sunday as their "blogging day". On Tuesday's and Wednesday's they're definitively out running.

Time of week for publishing.

3 : Norwegian runners are predictable, races do create a lot of blog posts (many of the bloggers on the source list are located in or near by Oslo).
6/4: Torsdagsløpet? (db.kondis.no)
12/4 : Start of Sognsvann Rundt Medsols 2012 (db.kondis.no)
15/4 : Holmestrand Marathon 2012 (db.kondis.no)
18/4 : Sognsvann Rundt Medsols race #2 2012 (db.kondis.no)
28/4 : Sentrumsløpet 2012 (db.kondis.no)


Last 30 days.

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Sentrumsløpet (2012)

Race #6 2012 - 10km - 41:43

The 2012 medal with the logo of four decapitated runners.

A kid's costume. The kid being me.

Jean would have told me to get my knees up if he saw this picture. (photo by: Randi Helen Gran).

Since March the summer has been no where to find here in Oslo. However it came back on the day when more than 9000 runners were ready for high pulse down town Oslo. No clouds in the sky, just a nice warming sun.

The summer is back!

I do! (src : twitter)

True that! (src: twitter)

Running peeps.

Sentrumsløpet is a great and social event. It's nice with a race through the streets of the capital of Norway. And with thousands of people cheering along the track. Thanks a lot specially to Anders TheYellowAndBlueLightning and Adelheid, they did a great job in cheering! Many of the same issues as earlier years were valid this time as well. I've written about it before (in 2010 and 2011) so I won't bother to go in details. I would like to remind the readers once again though.

CP Fail!

"Solsteik og dokø nr.2. Garantert årsaken til allverdens elendighet." Picture and quote by moshonista.

1) Capacity Planning - 26 toilets for more than 9000 runners = major fail!
Five minutes before start there were many (50-100?) people lined up in the queues. The result? Every café, restaurant, bar, hotel and what have you got near by packed with runners using the toilets, and assumingly the guests and owners of these places were quite annoyed. And those who didn't find a toilet went to Slottsparken and did their thing. #trashing this is called.

2) The start - the different start groups are too large. Something at least I find chaotic.

Thanks Petter. Not everyone were as patient. (src: twitter)

I could not agree more. (src : twitter)

3) The none-runners - who don't like "their" city filled up by sweat runners and demonstratively crosses the track without looking. They are many and dangerous. This year I even saw one man trying to cross the track in a car. Luckily he was stopped just as he was about to speed up and push his way through all the runners. Crazy man! After around 8 km I crashed with a woman. She walked straight out in the track, looking down. I fortunately managed to push her out of my way without falling over. Crazy woman!

Everyone loves runners and Sentrumsløpet, or?
Are there some, despite having the city more or less free of runners the rest of the year, that dislikes Sentrumsløpet? I checked out Twitter. Below are the results.

Sentrumsløpet and Oslo Maraton, same same.  (src: twitter)

What about men in bermuda shorts?  (src: twitter)

src : twitter

src : twitter

src : twitter


src : twitter

src : twitter


src : twitter

src : twitter

src : twitter

src : twitter

src : twitter

src : twitter

src : twitter

More than 9000 losers this year. Well, at least Maren is a winner! (src : twitter)

"My race" and more pictures
The shoes.

One of the nice things this year was the adjusted track. I found it a lot better than earlier years. No extremely sharp turns, no very narrow areas. It seemed faster, despite me going slower, but that was not the track's fault.

Not sure if it was wise, but had to try it as race brekkie. Pancakes with jam, chocolate sauce and honny.

Bought this mixture off a man, whose name is unknown, next to Akerselva. Costed me 200kr. He promised it would make me fly. Obviously it didn't work, but I saw a lot of pink elephants amongst the spectators.

And that brings me to my own race. I was more than one minute slower than last year. In 2011 I ran in 40:40, and this year my time became 41:43. A time I'm not very pleased with at all, but it was as expected. I'm training quite different now as I'm working on the 400MP. 5 minutes pauses in between short intervals doesn't improve 10km times. And I didn't exactly charge my batteries before the race. From Monday till Thursday I had four sprint/short interval sessions and three sessions at the gym doing weights. That aside, I think the time 41:43 represents the shape I'm in pretty well. I'm just not better at the moment. 

The guys at Sentrumssprinten, 800m.

I wish I had her stride. Ingvill "You can run but I'll run faster" Måkestad Bovim superior, as expected, on the sprint.

No CP trouble for me. My own private toilet next door to the start.

One of the most memorable and fun things was catching up with this boy after the race and playing games.

The running game.

The balance game.

The climbing game.

And the day was not complete before after a proper curling match.

Espen is once more ruining the reputation of everyone else. (src: twitter)








Get the flash player here: http://www.adobe.com/flashplayer



Links:
From the race | official results | official homepage |
From the media | kondis.no | NRK |



Saturday, 28 April 2012

The birth of runners.no

Norwegian runners that share!

On the 27th of April I got an idea, and since I tried charging my batteries for a race the next day I had time on my hands to implement the idea. The result became only 6.5 hours of sleep before the race, not great for the race but at least a new site was born.

Background
The idea popped up in my brain when I commented on mosjonisten.com's blog. I realised it would be handy having once place that gather all running blogs. Of course, you can manually do this in Blogger, Reader or alternative tools. However it would be nice if someone did this for you, and made sure the list was updated. And that someone seems to be me, since I had already started making an overview over all Norwegian running blogs.

Technology
Thanks to several great tools it didn't take too long to put it all together. I've used the following technologies / frameworks / tools:
Yahoo Pipes for feed management (read more here).
Twitter Bootstrap for layout of the website.
Disqus for the commenting system.
Twitter's widgets (tried out Tweet! as well) for presenting tweets.
I tried out zRSSFeed for presenting feed content, but ended up with own Pipes badgets.

The result
The final result can be viewed at www.runners.no as soon as that domain gets active, I just bought it so it will take a few hours be ready on Monday due to Norid not doing any activations on the weekends.

An early version.

Gathering feed from around the Internet.

Analysing the feed content.

Tweaking the results.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Disclaimer

Start, Stop, Start...
If someone do wonder I'm sort of addicted to exercising. When you sit on your butt in front of a computer all day long it's great to get up and move your body. And after I got divorced I have no one waiting for me at home either. No, that was not stated with a sad tone. To me, where I'm in life, this is just perfect.

When I start projects I can end up spending quite a lot of time and energy completing the task I did set out to do. But as sudden as I get addicted I might get fed up. That has happened before.

At Oppdal back in 2002. Photo: Ketil Isaksen. 

Norwegian Championship in telemark skiing at Kongsberg in 1999. Me to the left.

For years I skied a lot. I had 50 - 70 days of telemark skiing a year, next to work and studies. I could drive back and forth to Hemsedal  (about 6h in total) in one day if the conditions were good. I could get up 5am in the morning just to be at the right spot at the right time if the powder alert went off. In 2007 I injured my ACL, but I got back to skiing again after that. However, since 2009 I've not had a single day of skiing.

Vestmarkrittet 2009.

In 2008 I started cycling. I also got hooked on that sport. For about a year a participated in all the races I could find. I even bought myself a Toyota HiAce so it was easier for me to get to competitions with my bike and the rest of the equipment needed. One and a half year later I did quit cycling, as quickly as I had started. Since 2009 I've not done a single race on the iron horse.

Late in 2008 I started running. As written several times before my main goals were sub 40min on the 10km and sub 1h 30min on 21.1 km. After I reached those achievements my plan was to quit running as well, and find a new sport. But since running still is great fun, and the people I run with are awesome (except for one guy that always bullies me and calls me a girl) I didn't want to quit running. That's why I started on the 400 meter project.

And the reason for writing what I've just written was not only to show off. Needless to say, I like to show to the world and the readers of this blog, that I'm a multi talent that can do whatever sport that is thrown at me. Yeah, right. OK then, I can admit a few things. I only did participate in one Norwegian Championship in telemark and I didn't do very well at all. In the first race I got DNF after my name. In the second I finished as 31 out of 60-something. I did a few Norwegian Cup races though, but never performed well there either (some results). And when it came to cycling I was always very far behind the best. The reason I did quit was that I got so psyched out after a crash and my ex-wife getting all sour on me doing four hours trip after work. Never understood the latter though.

Cycling was painful. I didn't take the pressure. This became my last race.

I realised that pain sometimes do hurt.

Session 9 : Thursday 26th of April : 10 x 150m
But this post was meant to be about running, and my session on the track with Jean. Not sure how I managed to drift away, but those things do happen once in a while. I think the reason was that I wanted to come with a disclaimer. I wanted to explain to people that I might quit stop running as well. And then this blog will be about other things than running, like knitting or cooking. Or I might stop blogging. I don't know, but now you're warned. And while I'm at it, this blog is not meant to be just about running. I'll write about whatever I feel like writing about. Currently I'm a bit single minded, hence running takes up a lot of space.

Did the J-session again.

The heart rate monitor did work this time as well.

I have no plans to stop running though and today was my fourth day in a row with short intervals. Luckily I only had 10 x 150m on the program. I was tired and the rain was pouring down, but despite this it went well. The intervals were done in 33.5 till 23.0 seconds, gradually faster for each interval.

Split times, intervals and pauses.

So today's session was a good one. It was not that hard. After the session I might have been a bit too satisfied with myself. I told Jean it was a good session, however I also stated that I found the Tuesday session hard. Then he looked at me, smiled and told me that if I thought previous session was hard the next one would be a lot harder. On this coming Tuesday I will have to do 10 x 500m.

To be honest I'm actually quite worried about the Tuesday. I have no idea how I will manage. I'll try though. If worst comes to worst I'll just hit the wall. I'll bring two extra items on that session. A sick bag and a sleeping bag. If someone finds me on the track later that night please help me home.

But before the Tuesday we have the weekend and my sixth race of the 2012 season coming up. 10km at Sentrumsløpet. Good thing I've charged my batteries.