Getting back on it..

Treadmill run: going well doing the old 5.1-5.8 (through 40 minutes) and kicked it to 6.1-6.3 just at 42:30 (4 miles) when my fist hit the “stop button”. That lead to cursing ..still jogged .12 to make SURE I was at 4 then I went straight to the track (very little rest; like at a street crossing) and did 1 mile (8 laps in the middle lane). 4:26/4:26 for 8:52. I wish I could say it was easy, but it was tough.

8:52.. then I remembered this: (Indianapolis Marathon, 2000)

102 18/61 Ollie Nanyes 41 M Peoria IL 3:38:12 8:20

Oh f**k me dead. I know…18 years ago.

Then I walked 2 more miles.

Last night, I caught a nice ball game; it ended 4-0 Chiefs. The pitchers controlled things for most of it and the first 6 innings took just over an hour. But in one case, a Chief batter saw 17 pitches before he drew a walk..2 strikes, 4 balls and 11 foul balls! It was hilarious. The starter threw a complete game, struck out 6, allowed 8 scattered hits and walked no one. The Lumberking closer threw well too; hitting 95 mph with some fast balls (former Illinois pitcher)

Lumberkings visiting for an unusual Monday night game.

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My “date” could not make it as she had a family emergency and had to drive to her home of origin).



August 14, 2018 Posted by | baseball, running, walking | | Leave a comment

The route to excellence AND fun isn’t always fun

Yes, SOME people do get it:

The article itself (by Barbara Oakley)

All learning isn’t — and shouldn’t be — “fun.” Mastering the fundamentals is why we have children practice scales and chords when they’re learning to play a musical instrument, instead of just playing air guitar. It’s why we have them practice moves in dance and soccer, memorize vocabulary while learning a new language and internalize the multiplication tables. In fact, the more we try to make all learning fun, the more we do a disservice to children’s abilities to grapple with and learn difficult topics. As Robert Bjork, a leading psychologist, has shown, deep learning involves “desirable difficulties.” Some learning just plain requires effortful practice, especially in the initial stages. Practice and, yes, even some memorization are what allow the neural patterns of learning to take form.

Here is the way I see it: one can’t really understand math concepts unless one has some examples that they can experiment on. And learning the tools and objects isn’t 100 percent fun, 100 percent of the time. There IS going to be at least a little bit of drudgery.

But once you have mastered the tools, you can begin to build.

Workout notes: 5K run in 29:51, 1 mile walk cool down. I started out at 5.1 mph and increased the pace gradually until 10 minutes, then 6.7 to mile 2.1, then 6.8 for .5, then 6.9-7.0 to the end. It was not a long workout but a sharp one.

August 10, 2018 Posted by | education, mathematics, running | Leave a comment

Running gear store ambivalence

I started running regularly back in 1975 (to get ready for football) and have been at it, with an interruption for knee issues and, yes, morbid obesity, here and there. Yes, I ran a 5:58 mile as a 220 lb. offensive tackle and a 23:00 5K as a 230 lb. graduate student (1985) But the point is that I’ve been buying running shoes for a very long time.

I restarted running back in 1996 and because my feet are hard to fit, I mostly used running shoe stores, especially Running Central. The store used to be a small “hole in the wall” at Sheridan and Main street; it employed a few people (often very young) and had almost an off-beat, cult feel to it. People were personable and friendly; at times it appeared that the profit motive was secondary; it was about running first and foremost.

But eventually that store was sold and now it is a large, open, almost upscale “a bit of everything” store…offers not only the essentials but extras extras. And they employ many more people and they are trained to SELL. And they are good at it; after my last purchase I got a nice postcard from the person who sold me the shoes. (several pair). They work with you, fit you, etc. And they have a system to ensure that you get served in a timely manner..but “the sell” is always on.

So: more items, but definitely the profit motive is first and foremost with a lot more selling pressure.

To me, the new atmosphere is almost alienating; there is no “I want to see what the guys are up to” feeling about it. But at the same time, I get what I need and they do have buyer’s club discounts. And they appear to be good “public citizens”, sponsoring races and events.

So…I really wonder if my ambivalence is about change ..and perhaps the older, cozier store might well have gone under by now? I do get the feeling that the running community is much more diverse now..not just the hard core road runners who are hell bent on PR’s, trophies, etc.

And yes, though I have a model of shoe that works for me, I’ll probably get fitted for a new the store. And I did like it that an older lady worked with me the last time.

August 9, 2018 Posted by | Peoria, running | Leave a comment

Running weirdness: time to warm up

Today: my legs felt heavy and yes, I ate nachos last night at the game (for my dinner) so my 5.1/5.2 warm up (10 minutes) did not get me ready to crank in to 6.7, so I dropped back and continued 5.3-5.4-5.5-5.6-5.7-5.8 to 40 minutes. Then 6.1 to 4 miles (43:28) then 6.7-6.8-6.9 (6.7 to 4.5, then every .25) and finished in 52:17..then 1 mile cool down walk.

Funny how I could not sustain 6.7 after 10 minutes of running but could after 40 minutes of running.

Oh, running is rougher than it once was..mostly because my body has changed.

But hey, even Frank Shorter (1972 gold medalist, 1976 silver medalist in the Olympic marathon) is doing 11 minute miles these days. We all get old.

Last night, I went to yoga and then a Chiefs game. I picked it up after the 3’rd inning where the Chiefs were down 2-0. They managed 1 run (single, then later a sacrifice fly) but still trailed 2-1 going into the bottom of the 9’th. But 3 singles got the job done.

3-2 to win this 3 game series vs. Quad Cities, the first half champions.

Pretty night at Dozer. Rubber match in the series vs. Quad Cities.

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Evening game between playoff bound teams.

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Rally time! Chiefs down 2-1 in the 9'th.

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Walk off win! 3-2 Chiefs!

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August 7, 2018 Posted by | baseball, running | , | Leave a comment

Controversial thoughts (to some)

I think that I do better when I stick to talking to individuals about events. Sure, there are some that I just never discuss current events with.

I was thinking about civility (and other topics) and someone mentioned my speaking against “deplatforming” a public speaker at a university.

I should be clear as to what I meant:

1. Of course, not all ideas have intellectual merit.
2. And of course, a university should take pains that material taught in a course is valid. For example, a biology professor who taught creationism *as a valid intellectual idea* should be fired for incompetence.
3. And I am NOT talking about some open free speech area on campus, where one person has just as much right to be there as anyone else. No one is entitled to a friendly audience.

What I am talking about is, say, some controversial speaker at an approved campus speaker being shouted down or rudely interrupted and prevented from speaking, such as this:

Note: holding signs at the back or sides of the room is doesn’t prevent attendees from being able to listen. Nor is it wrong to ask tough questions during the question and answer period.

My beefs are these:

1. If an idea is bad or immoral, I am fully capable of coming to that conclusion without the help of “activists”. They have no right to censor what *I* am there to hear.

2. These “activists” aren’t changing anyone’s mind; they are making themselves look like jerks and perhaps gaining some sympathy for the speaker.

I’ll give an example of a case that had a happy ending: many years ago I went to a talk at a Unitarian church about the book The Bell Curve. The speaker was a psychology professor; he was explaining the arguments in the book (and yes, there are things in the book that its detractors do not realize is there..for example, affirmative action is DEFENDED in the book…to a point)

Now, some “activist” showed up and tried to stop the speaker..claiming he was like the “KKK”. Fortunately other church members shut the activist up and the talk continued.

Afterward, there were some tough questions and remarks that came from some very capable people, including from a professor of genetics. Those really exposed the genuine weaknesses in the book’s arguments (and they were there).

And that leads to 3

3. “Activists” disrupting one of these talks effectively shuts down more competent competing ideas/dissent from far more competent people.

I find it ironic that I was thinking about this when I read this article about …well, perpetually angry people not being as smart as they think that they are. If the shoe fits…

Workout notes: gentle 2 mile run (21:57) on the treadmill after weights; usual PT, usual miserable planks, headstands, back stuff.

pull ups (15-15-10-10), bench: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 8 x 170, incline: 10 x 135, military: standing 10 x 50, 10 x 45, Hammer machine: 10 x 140, rows: 2 sets of 10 x 50 single arm, 10 x 120 machine.

Now back to my diagrams.

August 6, 2018 Posted by | running, social/political, weight training | Leave a comment

Slow progress..

Weight: 195.4 before running. 4 miles on the treadmill, 2 mile walk outside, then work on my paper.
run: 10 minute warm up (5.2, 5.3), 20 minutes: 6.7 for 10, 6.8 for 5, 6.9 for 5 more getting to mile 3 in 28:47 and 3.11 in 29:45, walk for 1-2 minutes then run again to get to mile 4 in 39:38. Then 2 miles of walking outside.

Total miles: remarkably similar to last week (a few seconds faster) though today I felt good, even after the harder 20 minute segment.

Question: Trump tweeted an article about wage gains…which also pointed out that they were all but wiped out by inflation. Huh?

July 31, 2018 Posted by | economy, running, social/political, walking | Leave a comment

Getting the formula right…

So, what to do? I did have 196 miles of running/walking for July, so perhaps it wasn’t an accident that I did 4 today.

weights: rotator cuff, 5 sets of 10 pull ups, bench: 10 x 135, 4 x 185, 7 x 170, incline: 10 x 135, decline: 7 x 170, military: 10 x 50 standing (ugly), 10 x 45 standing (better..these are dumbbells, one 45 in each hand), 10 x 140 Hammer Machine, rows: 3 x (10 x 110) machine, 2:30 plank, headstand, side plank, shoulderstand/plow.

running: 21:50 run, .5 walk, 1.7 mile outside walk. The run felt GREAT …of course it was easy and short…

Fun: If you “get” this, you might be my kind of person.

Assumptions: everyone tells the truth, there is only “want/do not want” and only the three logicians count as “everyone”. What is subtle: the first two answers convey information: why?

2018 Midterms: I get the feeling that in every competitive district, the Republican will say that Ocasio-Cortez is the Democratic candidate’s “best friend”. You haven’t heard of her? Well, she won a primary against an establishment Democrat and aligned herself with Bernie Sanders, wants to abolish ICE (which didn’t exist prior to 2002…and I think that we had borders prior to then, but whatevers…)

As it sits, things are looking reasonably good for the House Democrats *at the moment* but things change, and the November elections are a political eternity away.

July 30, 2018 Posted by | politics/social, running, social/political, walking | | Leave a comment

Not losing one’s temper

I walked to the gym to do a few treadmill miles..only to find the upper level in disarray. Evidently they thought it was good time to move all of the equipment, including the treadmills. Figures…couldn’t do it when the gym was closed, I guess (eyeroll).

So I shuffled 5.1 outside on my hilly course and cut the grass; got some heat conditioning out of it. I should be good to go for a 20+ this Saturday.

Body weight: 194.6 before running. Still too heavy but I am making progress. I want to be in the 180’s again.

Last night: yoga then a ball game with my teacher.

Chiefs with Vickie, after yoga class.

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Homerun! 6 to 4 Chiefs.

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This was a crazy game. We missed the first 3 innings but caught the Timberrattlers in the 4’th; they got a 3 run home run just inside the foul pole to take a 3-1 lead. But Peoria responded with a barrage to regain the lead 5-3 and went on to win 7-5; the Chiefs…er…Distillers got 15 hits!

July 26, 2018 Posted by | baseball, running, yoga | | Leave a comment

One reason (among many) that I think that Trump will win in 2020

Yes, I know; the Democrats might well pick up seats in Congress in 2018..and maybe, just maybe, win back a chamber. It is POSSIBLE.

But, historically, incumbent Presidents have been tough to beat. Bush I lost in 1992, and Carter lost in 1980, and Ford (who wasn’t elected to begin with) in 1976. And Hoover lost in 1932. But the winners: Roosevelt (3 times), Truman, Eisenhower, Johnson, Nixon, Reagan, Clinton, Bush II, Obama; that is 11 election wins for the incumbent, 4 losses since 1932.

And yes, I see nothing hopeful among those potential Democrats being talked about.

And just who will vote for Trump and why? The “money” Republicans are getting tax cuts, deregulation and Supreme Court picks.

The rank and file? Well, evidence is that Trump, well, “punches hippies”; that is, attacks those that social conservatives hate.

And oh my goodness, many that the Democrats stick up for are not likable, at all.

Workout notes treadmill run: 4 miles in 39:40. Warm up (21:50 for 2 miles); basically 20 minutes starting at 5.2 mph and speeding up every 2:30 in the second 10 minutes, then the final 19:40 at 6.7 mph (17:51 for 2 miles), 1 mile walk.

Weight: 194.6, the lightest pre-workout weight I’ve been in over a year. It is gradually coming off.

July 24, 2018 Posted by | political/social, running, social/political | , , | Leave a comment

Is age catching up with me?

I am feeling a bit fatigued, at least physically. Part of the reason is that I am doing quite a bit of non-workout related walking in addition to my usual workouts, and the campus is hilly. But in the days of old, I never worried about that. But within the past 10 years or so, I noticed that routine hill and stair climbing was more difficult on the days I ran.

Today: weights at the WKU gym (a nice one) and then 4 miles of running: 1 on the treadmill (11:10) then 3 on the upstairs track (6.9 laps to the mile, and I did 21 laps in 31:26 (10:50, 10:44, 9:50..chased a young woman). I have to remember that this was sort of 5K-ish and within 2-2:30 of what I race these in these-a-days.

weights: weak..perhaps I rushed? 5 sets of 10 pull ups (good), bench: disaster. 10 x 135, 1 x 185, 5 x 170, incline: 10 x 135, decline: 5 x 165. Military: ok, 3 sets of 10 x 45 dumbbells (standing), 3 sets of 10 x 200 Hammer rows (usual), headstand and plank (2:30..easier?)

Note: my back can “feel” my not doing my back exercises.

Talks: good, as usual:

Slipknots in random walks (appears in proteins).

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The last one combined some serious global analysis, PDE and knot theory to deal with “almost real world” knotted cylinders.

July 20, 2018 Posted by | running, travel, weight training | | Leave a comment