Sunday, 29 July 2012

Wedding crossword

Well folks, I'm officially married. Won't go into detail here about all the ins and outs of the day, but figured I could share the crossword I made for the occasion. Go ahead and save, print, try (or simply ignore) it. 

We handed out a printed version to all the guests before dinnerIt was fun to watch people scratching their heads over some of the more obfuscating clues; it meant they were interested in solving it. The trick in designing the thing was to make something relevant but doable for the more distant acquaintances (i.e. not have too many inside references). Interlocking is hard. Lots of wedding-related clues/answers, naturally. Had to bite my tongue not to include more than one mention of something running-related (see 57-Down). 

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Post Tely race-mortem

I'll say this much: Waking up for a race at 5:30 in the morning makes for a long day. In short, the Tely 10 race went reasonably well. More on that later. The day after racing I went for a hike along the East Coast Trail, from Cape Spear to Maddox Cove, (then into Petty Harbour and finally into the Goulds). That walk put me over the edge. I'm officially tired. And tonight is a bachelor party of sorts, so I'm avoiding excess leg movement; it's 2 pm and I haven't left the house. That gives my time to write out some memories before they fade.

Let me review the Tely 10 race, both from a personal point of view and more objectively speaking.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Tely 10, round six

Quick personal update: along with getting married next Friday the 27th in St John's Newfoundland, I'm running the Tely 10 on Sunday for the sixth consecutive year. This year will be different, however, as my family will watch me finish. And all of whom are most definitely out of towners.

Different, yet the same story every year it seems, is the record number of racers. 2012 looks to be topping 3600 entries. Last year just under 3,000 even finished the race. I'm glad there's so much involvement, though I doubt Paul McCloy's 47-minute record will fall. A few months ago I wrote a piece about the Tely showing that more runners does not necessarily mean faster runners. But I am glad  this year will be attracting its fair share of competitive guys. Most conspicuously is Matt Loiselle, who will likely win this year's race. His times are hard to beat, usually finishing top three Canadian in big races (often behind Reid Coosaet or Eric Gillis). I might not make it near the podium if more come out of the woodwork. Who knows. I prefer to do some homework (to know of potential winners) but I won't be overly concerned about the who's who of the Tely. It's a 10 mile race after all, not a 1500m. I need to find my own pace then maybe latch on to someone else's if the winds pick up. The rest is beyond my control.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Chi running and beyond: efficiency

I went to a short seminar hosted by the Halifax Running Club on Chi Running. I'm sceptical at heart, and running 'techniques' don't intrinsically sound appealing to me. But I have a rule: I don't criticize something until I've tried it first hand. In the past that has included limiting food intake, manipulating stride tempo and breathing rhythms, taking painkillers, barefoot running, and too many others to start about here. I've only heard by second-hand means what it mean to be a "Chi" runner. My ignorance, my problem.

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Empty Olympic dreams, redux

I posted this piece a few months back regarding how tired I was of the Olympics. It was based off a post from the Globe and Mail piece that I'll repeat here:
The history of the Olympics is a history of failures. Every four years, one city is confronted with the world’s largest sporting event, and usually at least one thing goes terribly wrong: Debt, crowding, security threats or bad public image have sent most Olympiads deep into the bronze....
The Australians expected 132,000 visitors for the 2000 Games, and then received only 97,000 tourists during the entire period. That was better than Athens, where organizers expected 105,000 tourists per night and received only 14,000.
But the real troubles in Sydney began after the Games. Australian officials had expected that the Olympics would boost the Sydney “brand,” and overall tourism would nearly quadruple to eight or 10 million people per year in the years after the Olympics. In fact, there was no boost at all: Tourism in Sydney has stayed steady, at about 2.5 million visitors a year even as tourist numbers have risen sharply across the rest of the region.
I compared the end of an Olympic Games to the aftermath of a Gatsby party: all glitz and no memory (coming a theatre near you!).  Not to sound prophetic or anything, but here's a new article from NPR surveys over the remnants Beijing's Bird's Nest.