Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Happy Birthday

You might remember, I cheated a bit with my birthday present, and offered myself a 2-day training camp with Coach Eric, back in September.

"The" Coach's playground.

And guess what?, it worked. Might not have been much, but it was enough for him to "fix" me - or -at least- to give me back two things: The love of the trails, and the confidence in my running.
'Gifted'. Fairly gifted ? Good enough for me.
Sure, there was a couple of things I could still adjust, here and there.
Sure, there is still a bit of pain, here and there - this **damn** knee.

Do I complain thaaaat much ?
In any case, it was empowering enough - or unlocking - to get me on track for new adventures.
Armed with new 'running' form, I am covering more ground than ever.
This week-end : Waiakoa trail in Poli Poli park.

Poli Poli Adventure running

In the early morning, you are above the clouds.

Lost the trail pretty fast.
It was closed for a reason : There is no trail.

Well, anyway, You cannot get it really wrong.
Just go up.

Found it !
Lava Rock trail. Can't run on this thing. 

Still above the clouds.

Path is getting better,
we are now back in official forest tracks.

Well. 3:30 of trail running.
Body is responding fairly well, relatively to the amount of effort.
Pain is bearable. Views are unbelievable.
Could you ask for a better birthday gift ?

Friday, October 23, 2015


Remember when we were stuck in the middle of the pacific with our mechanical pilot going only Port ? Well, I finally took the time to look at it.
I know, I know, I only slowly getting back interested into sailing.
This crossing took a lot of energy in preparation - months and months, and the mooring installation was ... not that easy. With my running going on, I barely take the time to check the weather for surf or wind.

Little rusty, but the stainless steel is holding good.

That was the faulty bolt. Sized.
Not surprisingly, the issue was actually a tweaking I did not know about. Calm at home, it looked obvious we could realign the paddle.
We will need a sea trial, but overall, that was something we should and could fixed at sea in 20 minutes.
Shame on my salty sea skills.

There was a holding screw totally sized.
Needed the big tools and some desperate moves to get it.

'Marin d'eau douce'. I decided to take it apart, just for fun. and make sure I can do it again at sea. I suppose if I can take it apart, and put it back together,  I should be fine.

Getting there.
If you find this a tad boring, no offenses.
You can still watch LoL.

Semi Finals are there.

There is even a french guy playing.
YellowStar from Fntic - Fanatic.

Alright, he looks like a Korean, but he is French. And YellowStar do not refer to any jew reference, AFAIK, but maybe the fact that he looks Chinese and is a Star. Or something like that.
Those pseudos are silly anyway.

"He was two years old when he played on the Megadrive".
You cannot invent that.

Monday, October 19, 2015


With the kick off the Honolulu Marathon training, I signed back on long run once a week.
I focus on trail runs. Easier for the joints, and overall more pleasant than road running.
The only slight issue is that it is very wet, in the Makawao forest.


So wet, there is actually virtually no one on the trails.
Last time, I did not meet anyone during 2:30 of running.
I guess people don't like drizzling rain and mosquitoes.

It's a jungle out there

Whatever. It is actually incredible to feel my body going through those long hours and reacting very well. For sure, I keep the pace easy, as advised. Still, 2:45 is a long long time, and I always fond a little miracle to close the run without too much suffering.
And paradoxically, pleasure.
Next week is 3:00.
Well, maybe, this half hour more will make a hell of difference.
This time I am shooting for Poli Poli trails.

That's the plan

As I have no idea of that actual time I am gonna take around those - I ran the road part last year, but that's it - then it might be an actual adventure run.
You know when you leave, but not when you come back.
The only catch with Poli Poli is that this is very high, and you have to shoot for a very early start. Like 6:00AM.
The ultimate run is the skyline trail, that bring you all the way up to Haleakala.
Of course, it is in the making.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Running by numbers

The last couple of weeks, I did a couple of tests.
The first week was to try to set a bar. I actually had no idea how fast I could run.
The two tests useful to establish some metrics are 1 mile/race and 20 min/run.
My 20 min run should be close of a 5k, then I decided to go for a 1 mile and the 5k race.

War Memorial Stadium

I cannot tell if this is common, but we have access to a free and open real race track on Maui.
I decided for it to be the where I would establish those PR. It is actually quite fun to race on the track, there is a feeling of competitive spirit that exhale from the place.

From a statistic perspective, it looks like that.

I ran the 1 mile in 6:00, which is pretty fast, I think, with an average of 165 bpm and 200 spm.
The 5k followed, with a 7:00 pace, 22 minutes total and an average of 165 bpm as well.

With this you can poke into the McMillan calculator:

3:22 Marathon, 7:45 Pace. WTF ?

3:34 Marathon, 8:11 pace. Seems almost reasonable.

Well, one thing is certain, I should be running waaaaay faster.

The interesting bit is using my 165bpm average on 20 minutes, I can decipher my Heart Rate Zones.
Using Eric's tables, I got:

Zone2 Max : 142
Zone4 Max: 152
Zone7 Min: 161-165 : Vo2 Max.

Those specific zones are interesting, and eventually, you need to know them by heart and feel.
Zone2 is your easy/long run zone.
Zone4 is your marathon pace training zone or tempo runs.
You don't want to go over Zone7, this is when you start building lactic acid and jeopardizing your chances of closing the race. Over this, you start to take a chance of finishing.

My second marathon, I had an average of 175 between 1:40 and 3:20 of running. 
No wonder I crashed.

In a nutshell, I know I should be able to break the 4:00 barrier easily, even in the heat of Hawaii, 9:00 pace should be an achievable goal, I just need to watch my heart to be lower than 165 for the 3/4 of the race.

In theory.
From the numbers.


Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Best song(s) in the world

When I was a kid, I thought this was the best song ever written by a human being.

Morgoth. Under the surface.1993

Now, I am a grown up.
And for sure, this is the best song ever written in the whole universe, unknown and known from mankind, including alien music. Can you tell the difference ?

Gojira. L'enfant Sauvage. 2012.

As I said earlier, you don't want my playlist.

Oh. I almost forgot.
This guy is still my idol.

Alright. When I met him, he was more .. hairy.
Bubu, Je t'aime.

I know.
I am beyond redemption.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Back on the boat...

Hurricane season is over. At least , I am calling it over. Been a while I did not do much on the boat, and it was about time to check on the mooring.
And whale season is coming, time to get ready.

Coming in to Mala, this time, it is calm. Flat as a lake. I should be able to do some work.

Mala Wharf

It is always an endeavor to go check on the boat. Load the truck. Unload the truck. Some much stuff. And I got a bot to live simpler (One day...)

Truck is loaded
Setting up the dinghy takes me 20 minutes. I got it to a science at this point.

Traces tender is loaded. Shade Tarp, Sails, Covers.

We actually did some work, back home, preparing stuff. Sails have been properly fixed, by Maui Sails. Tarp shade has been prototyped in the yard.

Boat is still there.

Always a relief. I am not sure I will ever get used to have it attached to a mooring, in the middle of nowwhere, tethered only by one tiny - well, 1.5" diameter - nylon line.
You can notice sails are off the mast. Fear of hurricanes....

Shade try-out
Shade is far from perfect, but it will provide the basic sun protection that is needed to do any kind of work on the boat. Sun is hitting hard on the West side.

Old Mooring lines. New mooring lines.
Most of the afternoon will be swimming and struggling with the lines and shackles. I am switching to the 30' feet nylon line setup - nice for hurricanes and storms, lots of scope and stretch well, to the shorter typical setup, less tangles, easier to pickup and retrieve and less abrasion.

Tiny autopilot might be enough. 

With the windvane off the boat and nowhere to be ready - I did not even started to look at the issue, I needed a backup autopilot solution. The small Autohelm was meant to drive the windvane when the wind is too low, but I was not very happy with the results. It won't hold the boat in a storm, but to motor if it's flat. Might be enough.
Well, we will see soon.

Did not have the time to put the sails back on, but overall, a small step forward, and, under the shade, it was actually pretty confortable, with the gentle breeze at sea.
I just crossed 2 items on the infinite list of things to do on this boat.
Yeah. Your math are correct. Infinite - 2 = Infinite.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Winter is coming....

With the Honolulu marathon coming in fast, less than 12 weeks, 
I kicked off the training program.
First long run, 12 miles, around 2 hours, at an easy pace - less than 150 bpm.

Light rain, No one around.
The bike is always not ideal with the rain and mud.

Trails are good. Coach Eric told me that tracks are good, and I believe him.
I am now back on trails, back on my home turf, Makawao Forest.

Selfie after the run. I look pretty good.
I mean, from a tiredness perspective.

12 miles means 2 laps, more or less.
I did not account for the mud and the fact I will keep it light, walking in the slopes, but keeping my Heart Zone in Zone 2. Sometime frustrating, but at the end, it made actually the experience more enjoyable. At that pace, I feel I can go on for hours.

My name is mud.

I don't have real trail shoes anymore, and those were sooo slippery. The old bike trails in the mud did not help. Going up was tricky, Going down was .. even more.
God knows how I did not end up on my butt.
It took 2:40 for two laps.
Way out of any record time, I don't even want to look at my past score on this one.
The good news. Time past like a breeze, barely no pain. Soreness is back, of course, but the tomorrow morning, I actually felt I could run again.
So far, it looks I am on the good track.
Let's just hope it stays that way.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Training Camp .... Part 2

Yesterday, I woke up, walked the dog, and actually did not feel anything.

Few pictures I took back from my Jackson's trip on the way back.

Utah is empty

Beautiful mountain river in WY

Lakes in Idaho, on the way back

Empty plains, Mountain as a background.

Those landscape are not typical in Hawaii. I realized I was craving for change.
Maybe my body as well.

Now, I am gonna start to run again, with my new confidence and new form.
We will see where it carries me.

I do not expect it to be painless :)
Just hopefully, it will be manageable.