My Life as a Dog

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Nu Shooz

Mizuno - Wave Rider 13

I bit the bullet. I've been running long enough now that I decided that I needed some real running shoes. I had been running with a pair of cheap Nike shoes I bought last summer. Being the procrastinator that I am, I've been saying that I was going to get new shoes since I finished the Red Rock Relay in Moab. We today I happened to have a little interaction with my friend, Marci who just so happens to work at The Runner's Corner in Orem. I told her that I was going to pay her a visit soon and tonight I did. I really wanted some flashy ones but I opted for the ones that seemed to fit me best and feel the best when I ran in them. They also just happened to be on sale! :) Even if they are not super flashy they will match our Ragnar running clothes.

Things I learned from shopping for running shoes:

  • Buy shoes that are a full size larger than you usually wear.
  • Wear running gear (or at least something comfortable) to the store.
  • Bring your inhaler if you have asthma.
  • Your shoes should be laced quite loose other than at the top of the shoe because your feet expand as you run.
  • I'm a neutral runner.
  • Running shoes are only good for around 500 miles.
  • Walking in running shoes breaks them down faster than running in them.
  • If you wash your shoes remove the insoles first.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Steampunk Meetup

I belong to a meetup group called ProvoCreative Models/Photographers Group. Every month (usually) they plan an event with a theme. Models, photographers, and make up artists get together and use their talents to give each other experience and develop their portfolios.

A few weeks ago I went to my third meetup. The theme was Steampunk. If you don't know what that is don't feel dumb. I didn't either until preparing for this photo shoot. The short answer is that steampunk is sci-fi/fantasy version of what the future would look like from the Victorians. These are some of the photos that I took but you can see more on my photography website:

Homecoming Photos

Since I started my photography website I haven't mentioned much of my photos session. I'm going to try and  change that since that is what I do in my free time. :)

So last Saturday I got the opportunity to take some photos for a homecoming dance. My niece Brittany was going to her first date dance and asked me to take photos. It was a first for me. I really didn't know what they were expecting but I feel like the photos turned out pretty good and I would be interested in doing jobs like this in the future.

You can see larger versions of my work over on my photography website:

Losers! (not us but BYU)

Last Saturday me and my buddy, Kyle, dared to venture out to watch BYU and University of Utah face off at BYU. Kyle is a die-hard fan and I, well, I'm a good friend. We got tickets earlier that week and they were not cheap. To be a real fan I even went out and bought a BYU t-shirt which might have had its first and last wearing. Kyle provided me with a hat since he has a collection.

The game (like you don't already know) was a big old joke. Not that I'm a big football fan but I have never seen such a mess of a game! Shortly after half time the BYU fans started leaving the game by hoards. We stuck it out to the bitter end. If nothing else the company was loads of fun as always.

I shot a new Facebook profile photo for him since he was all dressed up in his fan uniform

We did have a Jimmer spotting.

We spotted this too. I'm thinking that smile didn't last long.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Miller Motorsports Park

September 9th my company treated us to a half-day trip to Miller Motorsports Park out near Tooele, UT to do the Mustang Experience. We divided the company up. Three of us went in the morning bright and early! (Had to be there by 8am.) And the other four went in the afternoon.

We got to the track a little early. Google told me it would take 1.5 hours to get there but it was more like an hour. Anyway, we wondered around their museum for a bit before the class started. We had a short instruction period where they basically explained how it was going to work and talked about some of the physic of driving then it was time to burn some rubber.

The class had 10 people in it and there were two instructors. One instructor took half the class and the other the rest. The instructor drove the pace car and then the rest of his group followed him 3 to 4 car lengths behind the car in front of it. Each drive got the chance to be right behind the pace car for 2 laps. So we each drove a total of 10 laps around the track. If you look at the map below we were just on the east half of the track.

It was loads of fun. My only wish is that I wouldn't have been right behind my overly cautious boss who was all too familiar with the brake. (Sorry if you are reading this Jason.)

After we finished our 10 laps, then we got to ride with one of the instructors for two laps. This is where is got to be a really fun. I'm not sure how fast we got going but I know it was lots faster than we went on our own.

Thanks for the Mustang Experience bosses!

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Progress: Year in Review

Today I broke the 27 minute barrier in running my 5K at Gold's Gym. Most days I go running I get frustrated that I'm not progressing as quickly as I would like to. It's easy to get caught up in the day to day changes and forget the big picture. It wasn't too long ago that my neighbor and friend reminded me of how much things have changed in the last year. See the conversation we had on Facebook last year. The last two comments are from 2011. I blocked out her name just in case she minds.

It was in October 2010 that I started running. I had been afraid of the treadmill at the gym. I would only walk on it at a steep incline. I didn't want to look foolish trying to run. I remember having watching The Biggest Loser and thinking, "If these people can run on a treadmill, why can't I?" I had several friends that were runners. One in particular that had been a big inspiration in me losing weight. So I started running. I think I started somewhere around 5.5 miles an hour. I would run for as long as I thought I could go and then I would walk until I felt like I could run again. I would repeat this for 30 minutes each time I went. Each time I went I tried to run longer and walk less. As I got more comfortable I would increase the speed.

In November, I had of bunch of friends that were running the Santa 5K Run in Provo the day after Thanksgiving Day. They invited me to join them and they were very supportive. I bit the bullet and registered. It motivated me to keep running. After all I didn't want to look stupid. The race came and I did a good job especially for a first race.

My niece had seen my efforts in running and wanted me to run a 5K with her in March. I agreed to do it. I started telling all my friends that I was going to do the Rex Lee 5K Run. When it came time to go, my niece couldn't make it but I had committed myself publicly so I felt like there was no backing out. I ended up running with a few new friends and before long I was committed to running a relay race in May.

The Moab Red Rock Relay was my first relay. It was a good first time relay. Runners only ran two legs each. Granted there were plenty of hills and my second leg was almost 8 miles long. When I was done I didn't even want to think about running another race.

Before long I was signed up for running The Dirty Dash 5K in June. That one was really a lot of fun and not so much work. Of course it took us an hour to finish it!

Coming up in October I will be doing my biggest race yet: The Ragnar Relay - Las Vegas!

I've gone from running my 5K in over 31 minutes down to 27. It's good for me to keep track of where I have been so that I can realize the progress that I have made. I should apply this to other areas of my life too!

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Thumbs Up

Over Labor Day weekend I went up to Idaho Falls to visit some friends that I don't get to see much of. It was a good time. As I was getting on the freeway there was a fairly young guy hitchhiking on on ramp. I don't know what over took me but I decided to give him a ride. I asked him where he was going. He said Salt Lake City. Ha! Too funny because I was going there too. I actually had made plans to stop in Pocatello and have lunch with a buddy. I told him that I could take him that far.

The guy, Tony, was kind of a granola type. He calls West Yellowstone home but is originally from Pennsylvania. He's 24 and works with some foundation trying to protect the buffalo who wonder off in Montana and end up getting shot by ranchers. He was definitely lives life differently than I prefer. He hadn't had a cell phone in several years and from the smell I was guessing that showering wasn't all the common either. I was pleased that I only had to put up with that for less than an hour.

It definitely was an education for me. I got to ask him about hitchhiking and what its like. And the best part is that he wasn't some psycho killer. I'm not sure that I'll rush right out to pick up another hitchhiker but I think I might give it a second thought before just dismissing the idea.