Thursday, August 27, 2009

Least Popular Gel Flavors

Editor's note: In a departure from our normally semi-serious blog posts, this one is a humorous list of some of the least popular flavors of gels. Can you think of any other flavors that might make for a bad-tasting gel? Remember, this is a family blog, so keep it clean!

Least Popular Real Food Gel Flavors in no particular order:
1) French onion
2) Hot dog water
3) Guacamole
4) Chicken gravy
5) Parmesan peppercorn
6) Au jus
7) Mustard
8) Ketchup
9) Soy sauce
10) Licorice
11) Tomato soup
12) Pea soup
13) Prune juice
14) Wasabi
15) Deviled eggs

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Races in Familiar Places: 2009 Pumpkin Run and 1 Mile Fun Run

Just received word from Dave Adams, Assistant Athletic Manager, that the 2009 Pumpkin Run and 1 Mile Fun Run will be held on Saturday, Oct. 31st in Mooresville, NC. The Pumpkin Run is an 8k that starts at the War Memorial Building and winds through residential sections of Mooresville. The route is generally flat, with one gradual uphill around mile three.

To obtain a flyer and registration in PDF form information go to:

From personal experience, it's a friendly small race where you might stand a chance of getting an age group award. It's also conducive to running with a baby jogger.

And since it's on Halloween day, it's your chance to run in a costume without getting too much grief from your running buddies.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Charlotte Running Club - A Passion for Running

Many of you have asked about the presence of running groups that meet at regularly scheduled times and places. Some of us are training for specific races and some just want to get together with other like-minded runners. Well, I have good news for you. Unbeknownst to me until last week, there is such a group. It's called the Charlotte Running Club. Last week I talked to Jay Holder, who is the Marketing Director about the club.

From their website:

"The club is for Charlotte, North Carolina runners who are interested in competing in various running events and want to be part of a collaborative group that helps each other improve."

"We are in search of runners who love the sport as much as we do. While the club is blessed to have some very fast runners, we welcome and are looking for runners in the community of all abilities. Charlotte Running Club encourages runners to have a passion for running. The club is always looking for new leaders to help establish new regular locations for running together in town. If you are currently part of a running group or know of one, please let us know. We publish dates, times, and locations for as many running groups that we know of in the area under Weekly Runs. Join us today!"

Although it's called the Charlotte Running Club, they have a number of weekly group runs in the Lake Norman area, especially around Huntersville and Davidson. Also, if you happen to work in Charlotte, you could train with them there. The runs are posted regularly on their website.

To become involved in the Charlotte Running Club, visit their site or send an email to

Monday, August 17, 2009

Final Day of the MILES OF MOORESVILLE Summer Race Series

This note from the good folks at Queen City Timing:

The final race in the 'Miles of Mooresville' series is coming up! Friday, August 21 is the last summer night of running for 2009. REGISTER ONLINE EARLY to guarantee your race shirt. The number of runners nearly doubled from June's race to July's so we can't guarantee a shirt on race night.
NONRUNNERS, you can walk the course, or please VOLUNTEER! We need you!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Boston Without the Marathon

DART members Chad and Laurie Randolph (married to each other, by the way) just returned from a trip to Boston, MA, where they celebrated their 15th wedding anniversary. While there they stopped by the famous Bill Rodgers Running Center/Store, just inside Faneuil Hall Marketplace.

For those of you who might be relatively new to running or otherwise unfamiliar with the name, Bill Rodgers is a legend of American long-distance running. In the late 1970's, as the nation's obsession with running was growing, Bill won the New York and Boston marathons four times each. He also competed in the marathon portion of the 1976 Olympics held in Montreal. Bill has also won many races of shorter distances throughout the years. He is also in constant demand as a motivational speaker.

Bill wasn't working at his store the day we visited, as far as we could tell. However, the gentleman there was very nice, friendly, and knowledgeable. Interestingly enough, he told us that one of his favorite marathons was in Charlotte, which he ran in the early eighties.

The store itself was interesting in how small it was; probably no bigger than your average living room. The main store was in the basement, and was crammed with racks and piles of clothing. The shoe wall was covered in brands both recognizable and unrecognizable, from daily trainers to spikes to a limited number of trail running shoes. A small selection of socks, nothing unusual brand-wise. Also, the watch selection was limited to a couple of Timexes. Above the main store was another store that was somewhat connected in that it sold Bill Rodgers t-shirts, but mostly it offered Boston Red Sox paraphernalia.

We picked up a couple of Bill Rodgers branded technical running shirts as souvenirs, which we will wear to remind us of being in Boston without having run in the Boston Marathon. There's always next year, right?

Monday, August 10, 2009

There's Gold in Them Thar Hills!

By gold, I mean not gold in the literal sense but in the rewards that hill work brings to your running regimen. Doing hill work is a terrific way to tax your legs and cardiovascular system without having to increase your speed. Being allergic to running fast during training, I like to think of hill workouts as a poor man's speed work.

Most half- and full-marathon schedules prescribe some amount of hill work. Runner's World put out a concise list of hill workout sessions they recommend. See the link here.

Those of us who live and run here in the Piedmont region are blessed (or cursed, depending on your viewpoint) with a multitude of rolling hills. There are many places where you can crank out a few hilly miles. Here are a couple within the confines of Davidson that I use on occasion. One is hill repeats and the other is a hilly course.

* South St. Davidson: Park near the McEver baseball fields in South St. Begin your uphill run where the greenway begins, but run uphill on South St. toward downtown. Stop at the three-way intersection near CVS. Turn around and do a slow downhill jog back. Each way is six tenths of a mile, so if you're trying to do six miles, run this ten times (five up and five back).

* River Run Subdivision: Park across from the soccer field at the Robert Walker Dr. entrance to River Run. Begin your run there and head into the River Run subdivision. Right turn at River Crossing Blvd. Left turn at River Falls Dr. Right turn on River Ford Dr. When you get to Greyton Lane (near the community swimming pool), turn around and head back. Each way is about three miles, thereby giving you six total of rolling hills.

* Bonus Route - Grey Road: This route isn't nearly as user-friendly as the other two, in that there are no sidewalks, there are the occasional critter (skunk, snake, dog, deer, etc.). Also, while there isn't much road traffic with which to contend, be prepared to step off the road and into tall grass if need be in order to let a car pass by. If this isn't your cup of tea, don't attempt it. If you're still interested, you will be rewarded by a couple of BIG hills. Later on I will use Grey Road in some longer runs.
Route begins at the intersection of Davidson-Concord Rd. and Grey Rd. Take Grey Rd. all the way to the new Abersham development, stopping at Abersham Lane on the right. Turn around and head back for a run that's just over 4.5 miles.

P.S. Thanks to Kara for suggesting this topic!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Area Greenways Profiled in August Issue of Lake Norman Magazine

Lake Norman magazine's August 2009 issue has an article on the area's greenways, both current and in development. Not all greenways are dirt trails, nor are all greenways asphalt. For example, Lake Norman State Park has nearly 13 miles of trails suitable for running and mountain biking. Conversely, Davidson's Southeast Greenway of nearly six miles is a combination of asphalt with concrete sidewalk connectors. Also good for cycling and running.

Pick up your copy of this month's Lake Norman magazine at most any local shopping center.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Davidson Lands Conservancy Run For Green 2009

It's hard to believe that it's August already and that fall is around the corner. In addition to cooler temperatures and colorful leaves, fall also brings races.

A terrific local race which started only three years ago, Davidson's Run For Green is where you can kickstart your autumnal racing. There are the usual half-marathon and 5k, and this year a 10k has been added. All races will begin near the town green, next to CVS in downtown Davidson, and will end at the town green behind the public library.

All three races will offer a challenging mix of uphills and downhills. The 5k and 10k will stay mainly within town, while the half continues throughout most of the River Run subdivision and back.