Monday, November 30, 2009

Day 1010 -- Jogger's Progress

Time41 days, 22 hrs, 7 min
11 days, 22 hours, 57 mins

The end of the month calls for a check on my progress. It's been a good month, particularly the last half. I ran 12 of the last 13 days, and a total of 24 days overall. My mileage was the highest total since August, and I ran 39 seconds short of 24 hours.

I thought I'd better check on my yearly goals, to see how much I needed to do in December to make sure that I meet them. I wanted to run 258 days, and I've already run 253. So I only need five more days in December. I ought to be able to do that. I wanted to run a total of 12 days of running time, and I'm already at 11 days, 22 hours, and 57 minutes. So in my five days of running, I only need to average 12 minutes a day. Most impressive is my mileage. My mileage goal for 2009 was 1658.4, and I'm already over! I passed my 2008 mileage last week!

So, I can take it easy in December and still make my goals. Knowing me, I probably won't take it all that easy. Which will make it even tougher to beat 2009 in 2010.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Day 1009 -- More Monticello

The Monticello Community Center, the unit address of the 257th Military Police Company. MP cannot be an easy job. You get all the hassle of being a cop, and the added pressure that the community you are assigned to police is mostly macho guys with guns.

I ran an easy 3.7 miles this morning. I wanted to get in some exercise, before the drive home from Grandma Jogger's house. I'm glad I did. The drive was OK, but the boys were noisy, and I'm running low on patience. Now we're home, and I'm trying to relax a little before I have to wade back into the swamp tomorrow morning.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Day 1008 -- Monticello

This is Hi-Way Liquors, the municipal liquor store run by city of Monticello. I could use a belt, after almost 10 miles this morning. It wasn't quite as long as I could have gone, I think. In any case, it was a good run.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Day 1007 -- Clear Lake

Clear Lake is just east of Clearwater. Apparently, the water is really clear up here, or at least it was when they were naming things. This image is from a bike journey of the Paul Bunyan Trail through Minnesota. OK, there's one problem. This is Clear Lake, Iowa, where the bikers launched their journey.

This is Clear Lake, Minnesota, from the web page of the Traveler's Country Club on the Mississippi. OK, if I mixed them up, do you think you could really tell?

I had to run outside this morning, since I don't have access to a gym or a treadmill here in Grandma Jogger's town. it was cold, but I survived. I ran just 4.5 miles. It was enough to loosen me up. I've been diddling around most of the day, doing a little grading.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Day 1006 -- Clearwater

This might be the Clearwater city hall. It's hard to tell. It's the main image on their web page.

Another nice thing about Snap Fitness is that they are open on Thanksgiving morning. I got up early and went down for a five mile run on the treadmill. Then the Little Joggers and I piled into the minivan and drove down to Grandma Jogger's house for a terrific Thanksgiving dinner. Now I'm watching the Packers and digesting.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Day 1005 -- St. Augusta

St. Augusta is a small town south of St. Cloud. As far as I recall, we only ever drove through it. There are lots of little towns around St. Cloud that we at least went to a garage sale or a church bazaar, but I don't think St. Augie was among them. (We're very informal about our saints up in Central Minnesota. St. Augusta is "St. Augie", St. Joseph is "St. Joe", and St. Benedict is "St. Ben". St. Cloud is just "St. Cloud". No nickname for him. (In case you're wondering, I believe that St. Cloud is a corruption of St. Claude, the French missionary.))

This picture of a garage fire in St. Augie is from the web page of the St. Augusta Fire Department. The fire was in September, 2008.

I went to Snap Fitness for the first time today. Our town has not one, but two 24/7 fitness places. Snap Fitness was having and end-of-the-year special, and I signed up. The main advantage over the gym at school is that they are open any time. I started my run at 5:30 this morning, a half an hour before the gym is open. The main disadvantage is that they don't have a track, only a treadmill. For now, I'm keeping both memberships, to see how much use I get out of each one. Anyway, after starting out a bit too fast on the treadmill, I backed off and had a slower seven-mile run.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Day 1004 -- St. Cloud

From, an entrance to St. Cloud State University. When I taught at St. John's, we lived in St. Cloud, because that's where the rentals were. There were some rentals in St. Joseph, where the College of St. Benedict is, but a lot more in St. Cloud. However, I didn't spend a lot of time at St. Cloud State. It's funny, because I actually know more people in the math department at St. Cloud State now than I did back then. Anyway, I don't know whether this archway was there in the early nineties. I don't remember it.

Today I ran a quick three. Shortly after I finished, it started raining, and it's been raining periodically all day. It's threatening to turn to snow tomorrow. We'll see.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Day 1003 -- The College of St. Benedict

The College of St. Benedict is the sister school to St. John's. They are actually pretty much joint programs. All classes at both colleges are open to students from either. When I was there, most people in the math department taught on both campuses, as least occasionally. Most of my classes were at St. John's, but some were at St. Ben's.

The seven or eight miles between the campuses present a logistical problem: ten minutes between classes ain't gonna do it. They have (or at least they used to have) seventy-minute periods with thirty minutes passing time. Since they can't get that many classes into a day, they have a six-day schedule. Monday would be a Day 1, then Tuesday would be a Day 2, Wednesday a Day 3, and so on until the next Monday would be a Day 6. Then Tuesday would be the next Day 1. Most classes met on either even or odd days, but some labs and stuff would meet only one or two days of the cycle. It was easy enough to get used to, but it did make it kind of a challenge to schedule doctor's appointments. "Are you free in the afternoon on Tuesdays?" "Well, it depends...."

This is the Bendicta Arts Center on the St. Ben's campus. I'm pretty sure that it was there when I was, but apparently it has been rehabbed. It won some sort of Design award from an organization with the initials AIA. I fished around on their web site, and I was unable to determine what AIA stands for, although one of the A's is clearly "Architecture" or "Architects".

I ran five and a half miles this morning. It was a bit warmer than yesterday, but a bit breezier. I have no grounds to complain, considering that we are this far into November, and haven't had any really bad weather, yet. I have only had to run indoors a couple of days.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Day 1002 -- St. John's University

In December of 1988, I earned my Master's degree from the University of Michigan, and started looking for a job. Back then, it was possible (barely) to get a job at the college level with a Master's degree. In fact, I got a two-year position at St. John's University, here in Collegeville, MN.

This was a good experience for me. The math department (which is a combined department between St. John's and its sister school, the College of St. Benedict) was terrific to me. They gave me some decent courses, and not just the junk that no one wanted to teach. They gave me freedom to teach my own way, but they were also there to help me when I needed it. It's no stretch to say that that job, my first full-time teaching job, helped shape the teacher that I am today.

This is the Abbey Church on the St. John's campus. Collegeville is little more than the college, the abbey, and a handful of houses. If you were to travel back in time to the early 90's, you would not see this scene. First of all, I was a much younger Jogger. But actually, I wasn't a jogger at all. I didn't start running until about a decade later.

I ran nine miles and change today. It was a little cold, but I got warmed up pretty quickly. Nine miles is sort of a drop-back long run for me, after 11 last week. I'll planning to try for 13 this next weekend, but that depends on the weather, and on where we are for Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Day 6B5 -- Avon

When I'm out on a run, I almost always say hello to pedestrians: fellow joggers, actual runners, walker, dog-walkers, etc. I'll wave to a car if I think I know the driver. And I always wave at the police. It's my way of saying "Thank you". It can't be an easy job. No doubt it is 90% boredom, 9% hassle, and 1% downright danger. Today, I get my chance to wave at the police in Avon, Minnesota. I also call your attention to Avon's motto: "Lakes, Loons, Living". Now, doesn't that make you want to visit?

I overslept a bit this morning. It wasn't enough to skip my run, but it was enough to make me shorten it. I ended up running about 4.4 miles. The weather continues to be decent. It was cool, but there was almost no wind, so it wasn't a bad run. So now I have started on my second thousand.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Day 1000

Of course, it's a completely arbitrary number. If we counted in Base Eight, this would be Day 1750. If we counted in Base Twelve, it would be Day 6B4. However, we count in Base Ten, and so this number is BIG and ROUND! Huzzah!

It's arbitrary in another way, too. It's the 1000th running day of JogAmericaBlog, but I was a runner before I was a blogger. I ran for 7+ years before I began the blog, but I never kept track of my days, or my miles. Whatever I ran back then, the totals are lost to the mists of history.

Anyway, I'm not afraid to celebrate. It was a good day, and for the 1000th time. And counting.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Day 999 -- Freeport

Boy, the water tower in Freeport, Minnesota, sure is friendly. Either that, or it's laughing at my running form. This picture is from Wikipedia.

I woke up yesterday, and just didn't feel like running. So I didn't. But I did close to seven miles this morning, in penance. It was cold this morning, with a smattering of rain, but once I got out and got moving, I was fine.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Day 998 -- Melrose

Welcome to Melrose, Minnesota! From their web site, I learn that:
Melrose is a great community to live, work and play no matter what the season. Its many amenities are sure to entice you.
I guess that I have yet to visit a city's web site that says, "This town really sucks. Keep on drivin'!"

Or, in my case, runnin'. I did an easy four this morning. I could have run more, but I forgot my gloves, and my hands started to get cold. I'm trying to treasure my outdoor runs. It won't be long before the snow flies, and I'll be inside for the winter.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Day 997 -- Sauk Centre

From the Sauk Centre Journal, frost on Ash Street, December 21, 2005. The notes say that it was about 0 degrees. Perhaps I'd better put my tights on.

It was well above 0 here this morning. It was a nice morning for a long run, and long run I did. Eleven and a half miles. I even managed to pick up the pace for the last 5K, and run it in under 30 minutes. Not bad, after an eight mile warm up.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Days 995 and 996 -- West Union

I've visited before, but its been awhile. They have the most delightful kitsch. Here you see some metal farm animals in front a feed store near West Union. Somebody just had some time to fool around.

Day 995 was yesterday. I got in a quick three miles, then headed off to school for a nice long day. I gave an evening exam, which turned out to be pretty long. The last two people didn't pack up until after 9:00, which is usually about my bedtime. This morning, I ran 5.5 miles at a medium pace. It was good.

Monday, November 09, 2009

Day 993 -- More Alexandria

From Randy Fischer Real Estate, this nice picture of a family enjoying themselves on the ice in Alexandria. It doesn't say, but I believe this picture was taken in late May.

I ran an easy four and a half this morning. It was relaxing after a long run yesterday.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Day 992 -- Alexandria

In Alexandria, they have a 28-foot tall Viking. I actually first saw him at the web site for the Runestone Museum, but they don't have a very good picture for pasting myself into. So I stole this photo from the City of Alexandria web site. I also checked The World's Largest Collection of the World's Smallest Version of the World's Largest Things, where, yes, Big Ole is listed as the World's Largest Viking. They don't have any pictures, but it's been so long since I've visited TWLCotWSVotWLT, I thought it was worth the link.

In other things that it's been a long time since I've done, I ran ten miles today. I believe that was my first double-digit run since the marathon on September 20. It felt pretty good, actually. I was tired, but not spent.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Days 990 and 991 -- Brandon

Brandon, Minnesota, has its own history blog. Here you see the construction of the Highway 52 bridge in the early 1930's. I, myself, am running for safety.

I ran yesterday and today. A quick three miles yesterday, and a slow five today. It felt OK.

I have gotten into the habit of walking Maggie after my run. Instead of just walking around the block to cool off, I stop and grab her for her morning stroll. It takes a bit longer, but it gives us a little Daddy and Doggie time. I'm sure we make quite a sight, in my sweaty clothes and funky tights.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Day 989 -- Evansville

A line up of farming equipment in Evansville, Minnesota, waiting to convoy out to Oklahoma, for the 2008 harvest. It's not entirely clear to me why it makes sense to drive this equipment down from Minnesota, rather than getting it from somewhere closer, like, say, Oklahoma. But I'm sure that there's a good reason for it.

I ran a good long seven miles this morning, and composed a memo in my head, which I then typed up when I got to school. It was addressing a proposed policy that I am against, and I wanted to figure out how to lay out my arguments without sounding defensive. We'll see how well that went over. I said to my friend that that's why running is better than racquetball. You can't compose a memo in your head when you are playing racquetball.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Day 988 -- Pomme de Terre Lake

I couldn't resist a stop at Pomme de Terre Lake. Mostly, that's because I love the French words "Pomme de Terre." Literally, they mean "apple of the earth." This is what the French call a potato. Cool.

To clarify, Pomme de Terre Lake is a lake. Elbow Lake, which I visited yesterday, is a town. Well, I guess it's a town and a lake. This photo is from the Army Corps of Engineers. The ranger here seems to be talking to the tots about water safety.

I got in a good 6.5 mile run this morning. That was a little longer than I had planned, partly because I just didn't plan well, and partly because I had a detour. As I was on my way home, I ran into a bunch of people moving a house. So I couldn't run through, and I ended up going about a half a mile out of my way. Which was good. Good exercise.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Day 987 -- Elbow Lake

If you are in Elbow Lake, Minnesota, and need a pharmacy, may I recommend Trumm Drug? They actually have two locations in Elbow Lake. The other one is inside the clinic, and they don't seem to have a picture on-line.

Today was nice. It was the end of Daylight Savings Time, so I set my alarm for 6:00, but still got up at 5:00, and got in an hour and a half run before church. The only problem is that now, it's only 8:00, but I'm already ready for bed.

This morning, I only ran eight miles, but I treated it as a long run. I wore my Fuel Belt(tm) and stopped for brief walks every mile. I'll use that as a base, and start working my way up. Next week: 9 miles.