Monday, February 27, 2012

Top 10

Princeton's review of top colleges is out and we made the top 10 values for public schools.

It's good to see that the academics side of the University continues to get better while the athletic side may be in a holding pattern.

Who's ready for some spring ball. Sounds like there's going to be a lot to look at this spring with positions and depth. Let's just hope the guys keep their heads and stay out of trouble. It's sad that I expect more news from the law breakers than the play makers.


Week 2 PRR Training

Week 2 (3 days)
  1. walk 4 minutes, jog 1 minute (1 interval), repeat 4 more times for a total of 25 minutes - speed up your walk pace each minute so that when the time comes to jog, it's not a huge change. Take the first minute of the walk after the jog to recover. It doesn't matter how fast you jog, just make it faster than walking pace.
  2. jog 2 minutes, walk 8 minutes, repeat 2 more times for a total of 30 minutes
  3. jog 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes, repeat 3 more times for a total of 24 minutes

I'm going to add in a Bonus Day each week in case you want a little more. You can do this whenever you want.

  • walk 1 minute, jog 1 minute, sprint 20 seconds - do 3 times, walk/rest for 5 minutes and do 3 more times (about 15-20 minute workout)

Just a reminder that if you want to run the Peachtree this year, make sure you check out the registration information.

I also mentioned that in a few weeks, we'll switch from time training to distance training, so you may want to start looking for a track to use or at least tack some distances around your neighborhoods so you have an idea where 1/2 mile and full mile markers are. (Not needed if you're focusing on treadmill training but you will need to get outside at some point to get used to real hills and outside elements)

One thing I haven't mentioned is stretching. This varies greatly for each person and in my opinion is just learning your own body. Most everything you hear or read tells you to warm up your muscles first with a light walk or jog, then stretch before a race or workout. Then stretch again after the race. I usually do some very mild stretching before races but rarely do anything before workouts. Honestly, I usually just try and start out at a little slower pace or do a few minutes of walking before. After a workout, I always make sure to walk around a little and get my heart rate down below 120 before I fully stop moving.


Friday, February 24, 2012

Friday Frivolities

Happy Friday, peeps.

Not a lot of news to report on, but let's dig thru what I have rattling around me noggin:

LINSANITY IS RUNNING WILD! Even if you don't follow the NBA, the Jeremy Lin story is absolutely incredible. This is strictly a case of a player's style meshing perfectly with a coach's style and the perfect personnel surrounding him. The caveat is that he was undrafted and cut by 2 other teams, not picked up specifically to fill a need. He was picked up to fill a roster spot and meet the league minimum of 12 active players. Lin is very crafty with the ball and is a great shooter w/ 3pt range. The fact he can drive and dish and has plenty of spot up shooters around him just makes this all the better. Just a really fun story to watch.

In TV news, The Office jumped into the Jim & the Hot Girl storyline last night and I commend Jim on his willpower. The fact that Dwight kept running in and out of the room probably helped him keep his johnson in his britches.

Another show that I have (inexplicably) yet to write about, yet is my favorite comedy on TV is Tim Allen's Last Man Standing. I never watched Home Improvement, but I really love this show. Every time we watch it, my wife says, "That's you." I consider it a compliment.
Really funny stuff if you haven't yet discovered it.

I have DVR'd all of The River and Alcatraz, but I hear that they are becoming ludicrous and losing steam. I might delete them and save myself the time.

I had high hopes for The Firm, but it's been moved to Saturdays, a.k.a. No Man's Land. I guess I'll just go ahead and delete them, too.

For those of you that like Community (it never clicked w/ me despite the fact that I love Joel McHale on The Soup and consider Chevy Chase a legend), it's coming back next month in it's old Thursday at 8 slot (and 30 Rock is thankfully going back to it's old 9:30 one).

I finally got back to the theaters last weekend and took my son to see Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (he's a HUGE comic book/superhero fan). We really enjoyed it. It's pure mindless entertainment. Where the first one focused a lot on character development, this one jumped in feet first from the opening frame with action for the duration of the movie.
On a side note, manic Nic Cage is the best Nic Cage of all.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention the potential, i.e. likely, position switches for the Dawgs: Ray Drew to DE, Richard "M'Effin" Samuel to FB, Malcolm Mitchell seeing some time at CB, etc.
Like The Senator said, the Granthamization of this roster and fully utilizing talent is in full swing.

Also, Richt is expected to receive his contract extension in the coming weeks.

One last note, the fantastic SEC Storied special on Herchel Walker is now available for sale. This will complement my 1980 Dawgs DVD perfectly.

Onward & upward, peeps.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

MLB changes

MLB has decided to once again make a few changes to the divisions and playoffs for the 2013 season. Here's an opinion piece from yahoo that lists out the changes. By all indications this doesn't fix the biggest problem with baseball, which is the crazy unbalanced schedule. Major changes are that Houston goes from the NL Central to the AL West and the addition of one more wild card team.

No other sport will ever be as successful as the NFL simply because of our modern day attention span and the format of weekly games. The other major sports seasons are just too long and too unbalanced. Because of the length of a season and attendance, TV contracts are too hard to balance revenue in these other sports which creates discrepancies between large and small markets. Small market teams continually win Super Bowls and can turn things around very quickly in the League simply because TV revenue is so huge and the salary cap keeps everyone on an even playing field.

Honestly, the NBA is more interesting this year because they are cramming so many games in a short time and playing less games overall, i.e. the season is shorter. The playoff scheduling is a joke but the regular season is actually fun this year. It's bad for players but great for fans.

But back to America's pastime (past tense). Living in Tampa for 3 years, I really got to see the major issue with baseball and that's how small market teams have to play unbalanced against large market teams. The A's can compete in the West because they don't have to play the Yankees and the Red Sox 22% of their games. Tampa has done some amazing things over the past few years by getting to the playoffs and even a World Series but that's an anomaly and not see very often (think Baltimore, Toronto, or Washinton). The Rays are in a huge disadvantage for a wild card slot because they have to compete more times against the highest 2 spending teams than a team from the AL Central or West. I like the move of evening out the divisions, now they just need to even out the schedules. IMO, this works out better for the fans too. As a Braves fan, I get tired of seeing them play the Mets, Marlins, Nats, and Phils so often. Here's my schedule solution:

Play 12 games against everyone in your division (6 home/6 away) and 9 against the other 2 divisions within your league (rotating by division who gets the 6 vs 3 home games). Then play 3 games against a rotating division from the other league with 4 games played each against the team that finished in the same place as you in the previous season (like the NFL does). So the Braves schedule for 2013 would look something like this:

  • 48 games against NL East (12 each vs other 4 teams)
  • 45 games against NL Central (9 each vs 5 teams)
  • 45 games against NL West (9 each vs 5 teams)
  • 16 games against AL East (4 vs team that finish in same place as you previous season and 3 each vs other 4 teams). Rotating by division every 2 years to get the home and home series.
  • 4 games against AL Central team that finished in same place as you previous season
  • 4 games against AL West team that finished in same place as you previous season

I like this idea as a fan because you get more chances to see other teams and it makes the wild card spot a little more balanced. I'm also okay with reducing the number of regular season games but I don't like the idea of adding too many more wild card teams. Hockey and Basketball have too many and baseball probably could use 1 or 2 more and the NFL has the perfect amount.

At the end of the day, I just want the Braves to play the Rockies more out here so I can see them.


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

BioLite stove - hiking

This is mainly for my buddy Andy but anyone who likes to go on overnight hikes and wants a lightweight cleaner cooking option, check this out.

I have no idea how it works, I currently have a jetboil sol stove and it works great but you do have to carry fuel. Which is no big deal for a day or two but if you plan on back country hiking for days, every ounce of weight makes a difference. I'll keep an eye on this one and maybe give it a try this summer as I plan on doing a week out in the Rockies at some point.

I'm avoiding talking about UGA basketball after that South Carolina game. Unless they win the SEC tournament and then make the sweet 16, you won't hear anything else about them from me this season. Gym dogs seem to be surging at the right time and congrats to the Lady swimmers for another SEC title.


Monday, February 20, 2012

Week 1 PRR Training

Last week was just a warm-up, this is officially week 1 of training. I'll label all the Peachtree training stuff PRR Training so if you want to go back and see anything, just filter on that label.

The first half of training will focus on timed walks/jogs/runs and the second half will focus more on actual distance. I don't know a ton about nutrition but have read plenty and will share some of those tips as we go along in the process.

Like I said in the first post, the training schedule will just be 3 days a week but feel free to do more if you feel like it. If you only do the minimum 3 days/week, try to take at least one day off in between workout days. Just like working out with weights to get stronger, the hardest part of getting to a point where you can run 6.2 miles is building up a base. Trust me when I tell you that getting to that first 3 miles will be a lot harder than the last 3.

Week 1 (3 days)
  1. walk 4 minutes, jog 1 minute (1 interval), repeat 4 more times for a total of 25 minutes - speed up your walk pace each minute so that when the time comes to jog, it's not a huge change. Take the first minute of the walk after the jog to recover. It doesn't matter how fast you jog, just make it faster than walking pace.
  2. walk 4 minutes, jog 1 minute, repeat 5 more times for a total of 30 minutes - same plan as day 1 just one more "interval"
  3. jog 2 minutes, walk 6 minutes, repeat 2 more times for a total of 24 minutes


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Willie's back

BVG and Willie are back together. So Auburn is creating an ex-UGA defensive coaching team. Not looking forward to seeing BVG on the other side but don't really care too much about Willie. He's a good DB coach but you can only teach so much to 18 year old's. You really need a great balance between talent and coaching to be super successful in college.

The talent levels in the pro game are so much closer than the college game. I think football is the exception where coaching is actually more important in the pro game than it is in the college game.


Couch to Peachtree plan

I'll be providing a weekly unofficial training guide for anyone who currently can't run to the mailbox and wants to run the Peachtree Road Race on July 4th. This gives you about 19 weeks to build up to a 10K, which is plenty of time. I'm not in any way licensed to train anyone but this is going to be a very simple and easy schedule only requiring 3 days of training per week. I'll try to post each week's schedule on Monday's and title them clearly so for those who could care less, you can skip.

For the record, I won't be running it this year and I've actually only done it 3 times but have raced plenty of 10K's and can at least answer any questions you might have about the event itself. I will however be doing the Boulder Boulder. A very similar event held out here in Colorado. So if you want to come out here for the race, maybe I'll buy you a beer to celebrate post race.

Please note that these are massive races (number of runners) and are very fun but much larger and more complicated than many other races. Smaller races usually start in one group at the start time where the larger ones will go off in waves or heats. These waves are usually determined by your projected finish time. You may be asked to provide proof of this by showing a result from a previous race (usually only if you are trying to qualify in one of the first waves).

Advantages of big races:
  • Usually more "fun" courses. Meaning they run through big cities, have better in race amenities like bands, sometimes vendors throwing out free t-shirts, burritos, or even beers.
  • The more people around watching and racing usually helps with motivation during the hard parts. Being in the middle of a race all alone can make it hard to find motivation to keep up a certain pace.
  • Race Expo's. Cool places to walk around the day before to find some cool gear and food.
  • Usually better quality race t-shirts
  • They can help you qualify for other big races if you are looking for setting a time.

Disadvantages of big races:

  • Crowded. Usually not going to run your best time because there's just too many people around you.
  • Waiting. Unless you qualify for an early wave, you could be waiting around for a long time before your wave even starts. Later waves in the Peachtree have waited well over an hour from the actual start time before they get started. I finish the race before some people even start. Not because I'm fast but because there's just so many people and hence, waves.
  • Parking. Bigger races are usually a pain to get to and from. Sometimes you have to take a bus or public transportation which isn't too bad going to the race but not quite as fun riding with 50 sweaty, stinky people back. For a local small race, you can usually show up 20 minutes before, park, and be ready to go but expect to arrive much earlier for bigger races.
  • Because of the sheer number of participants, they usually don't have a lot of options post race for food/drinks. Some smaller races will have pizza, drinks, and sometimes full dinner options but something as big as the Peachtree only gives you a bottle of water and maybe a cookie or half bagel if you finish the race early enough.

So without further ado, the schedule for this week is to go for a 20-30 walk everyday. I'll let you set your own pace but do a minimum of 20 minutes everyday. If you're already doing something around this, then push your pace but don't worry about doing any more than 30 minutes this week. Also, I don't want to hear any excuses about the weather. I ran home from work the other day in 20 degrees and snow covered ground. It wasn't fun but thanks to yak trax, I made it without busting my butt.

You'll be ready for a 5K by the end of April, so if you see a local 5K around that time or after, feel free to sign up to help with the training motivation and get a race under your belt. Speaking of signing up, if you are thinking about the Peachtree, you need to start looking at the registration details now. Let's get in shape dawg nation. The worst thing I ever had to see was a Gator team doing a triathlon together down in Florida. They all had their stupid custom gator tri jerseys and doing gator chomps all over. We must not let this happen in Atlanta.


Friday, February 10, 2012

Friday Frivolities

Friday is finally here, but like the slut she is, she'll be gone in no time.
In the meantime, off to the frivolities:

I'm really liking the upcoming subplot on The Office between Jim & the hottie temp. That show was at it's best when it was mixing tense drama with it's usual slapstick shenanigans, i.e. Jim & Pam's sexual tension and subsequent pairing.
As I had previously stated, I have been slowly losing interest in this show all season. I absolutely love Robert California, but I just can't stand Andy and never have been able to tolerate him. I'm very interested in seeing where this goes with some of the gang headed to Tallahassee, FL for 3 weeks to work at Sabre, Jim & the intern (but no Pam) included. Remember, Jim all but took Pam away from her warehouse-worker fiancee in the first place. What goes around, comes around? We shall see.

In other TV news, this will be the last season of House and I think it's just the right time. It's hard to top what he did last year and there's only so many more "oh, that's it!" revelations leading to the correct diagnosis. I have really liked this show, but it's time for it to end after 8 good seasons.

How good is Justified? Dammit, FX. You guys are the proverbial bomb.

As for the movies, I haven't darkened the doorstep of a theater in months, but I have Safe House (Denzel & Ryan Reynolds) in my cross-hairs.
I was gung ho about seeing The Grey, but Simple Man's review coincided w/ everyone else's, so I'll just wait for the rental.

Speaking of rentals, I saw Drive (Ryan Gosling, Albert Brooks) and really liked it. I'm a sucker for well-placed and well-done violence and this hit the nail right on the head. I recently read where this woman had the audacity to sue (either the studio or the theater, I can't recall) because she said the previews made it look like a Fast & Furious movie. Well, it's nothing like that, but I do see her point. I just wouldn't sink low enough to sue over it. (I should have sued for the steaming pile of dung that was Hannibal Rises, but I didn't.)

The Double (Richard Gere, Topher Grace) was pretty good, too. The previews absolutely give away the plot twist (which I found dumb and led me to almost passing on it), but it's handled well in the end. This didn't make a dent at the box office likely for that very reason.

Dream House (Daniel Craig, a.k.a. Bond, James Bond) was really satisfying in that I knew absolutely nothing about it and almost passed on it because it looked like a formulaic horror movie, but it's anything but that. Give it a view on rental or PPV when you have time.

Very little football-related Dawg news to report and I just can't think of anything nice to say about the basketball team, so onward & upward, readers.

Until next time...

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Denver snow pics

Be careful not to poke your eye out.
Big Red
Baseball tribute (anyone get it?)
A creek coyotes like to play in.

Rivalry in Jeopardy?

I get the thinking behind this, but I just don't like it. Exceptions need to be made for long-standing rivalries like us vs. AU (and Bama vs. UT).

I understand why the players & coaches would be opposed to a 9-game SEC sched, but there are ways to keep us playing AU every year if we get creative.

Yes, you need 1 or 2 non-conference/FCS cupcakes a year, but I really don't want the Deep South's Oldest Rivalry to become an every other year (or worse) game.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Movie reviews

We got a deuce ton of snow end of last week so I walked up to the movie theater and caught some flicks.

For the record, close to 2 feet from Thursday night until Saturday morning non stop. To top it off, another 4 or so inches today. And the best news yet is that hardly any of this is hitting the mountains for skiing......boooooooo. [I'll post some snow pics later this week]

Man on a Ledge
Not too bad, very short and somewhat entertaining but don't expect anything mind blowing. It's basically a light version of The Negotiator and the ending was pretty weak. Wait for rental.

Underworld: Awakening
You get what you expect with these. I'm a big fan of the Underworld series even if the stories are weak. Again, very short and a good flick for anyone who doesn't want to think too much and see some decent action. Not the best 3D but not bad either. Worth the theater to see the 3D on the big screen but you won't miss too much waiting for rental.

The Grey
Pretty disappointed with this one. I guess my expectations were too high. I love hiking outside, so I had a hard time getting past my outdoor snobery and believing the wolf hunting and survival techniques (too much Survivorman or Man vs. Wild probably). It felt a little like The Edge. Wait for rental on this one also.

Also caught Bucky Larson on rental
I'm a Swardson fan but this wasn't his best effort. The storyline seemed like it would be pure gold but it was very weak and a very slow movie. Don't get me wrong, there are a few great scenes and lines but it's no Grandma's Boy.

As far as TV goes, currently my DVR favorites are
  • White Collar
  • Justified
  • The Finder
  • Archer
  • Modern Family
  • Happy Endings

Oh I have other shows, but these are top of the list now. I obviously don't have HBO, Showtime, or Starz since nothing makes my list and all I hear about is how great some of series they have are.

Final note: my chorizo, cheese, and bean dip went over very well at the Super Bowl party and I won 3 of my 5 bets on the game I made in Vegas 2 weeks ago.

-snowed in Simple

Thursday, February 2, 2012