Thursday, September 30, 2010

Day 1222 -- Jogger's Progress

Time52 days, 16 hrs, 3 min
9 days, 21 hrs, 2 mins

Interesting fact of the month: I ran 27 hours and 55 minutes, exactly the same (to the nearest minute) as in August. However, I ran two miles more, so my average pace was up this month. On the other hand, I had two extra running days, so my average time per outing was down. Is there nothing a geek can't overanalyze?

I realized that when I grab this forecast from, I'm actually looking at the low for Sunday night, not Saturday night. Saturday night is the one that's going to effect me. And it's going to be even colder! OK, 38, instead of 39, as of today's forecast.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Day 1221 -- Maitland

A very nice ivy covered tower in Maitland, Ontario, uploaded by "americatramp" to Panoramio.

I ran a really easy five this morning. My main goals this week are to stay loose, but not hurt myself.

They have reduced the chance of rain for Sunday, but also reduced the temperatures. 36 degrees? Really? That's barely above freezing!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Weather Update

It's foolish, of course, to watch the forecast this closely. It's going to change, slightly, every day. Today, they've changed it to partly cloudy, with a 20% chance of rain. Tomorrow, who knows? As long as it doesn't heat up, I'll be happy.

The forecast, by the way, is from

Monday, September 27, 2010

Day 1220 -- Brockville

A rare Monday run, for two reasons. First of all, I didn't work too hard yesterday, so I had energy this morning. More importantly, the Packers are on Monday Night Football, so I expect to stay up late tonight and sleep in tomorrow. Right now, they are beating the Bears 10-0 in the second quarter. Both teams are 2-0, so it's a pretty important game for this early in the season. And, of course, it's the Bears.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Day 1219 -- Front of Yonge

Another little township with a strange name: Front of Yonge. I see from their web site that they are home to Canada's smallest national park, the St. Lawrence Islands National Park. I don't immediately see where they got the strange name, but it's probably there, somewhere. The photo of the fire van comes from Fire Buff's page of Ontario Fire Departments.

Only ten miles this morning. I had to do something to make it a challenge, so I ran it nonstop. It was cool enough that I could carry two hours worth of water, so I could do that. It felt pretty good, all told. Now I just take it easy this week, and kill myself next Sunday. Piece of cake.

I read somewhere that you should set three goals for a race: a basic goal, a challenge goal, and an ultimate goal. Your basic goal is what you expect to make if you don't disaster. If you make your basic goal, you've had a good day. Your challenge goal is a step up. If you make your challenge goal, you've had a real good day. Your ultimate goal is what you might make if everything goes exactly right. If you make your ultimate goal, you kicked ass.

So, here goes.

Basic goal: finish the race. Walk, limp, crawl, I don't care. Finish under my own power, under the 6.5 hour time limit. That would put me ahead of the Madison Marathon, after all.

Challenge goal: Walk only through the aid stations. There are 14 aid stations, just under one every two miles, which should be about right. If the weather isn't hot, and if I don't go out too fast, I can do this. It's only a couple miles further than I ran two weeks ago, and I didn't do any unscheduled walking that day.

Ultimate goal: A marathon PR of 4:50:29 or better. This would be quite a feat. I would need to hit the perfect pace. Too fast, and I'll burn out and finish walking. Too slow, and I won't make the time. Frankly, I doubt that I can do it in the shape I'm currently in. But that's what makes it the ultimate goal.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Day 1218 -- Leeds and the Thousand Islands

Leeds and the Thousand Islands is apparently a single community. It contains (they contain?) this plaque, commemorating the site of the Landsdowne Iron Works. The photo of the plaque can be found at, which is a cool idea for a site.

As promised, I ran six miles yesterday, and none today. I wanted to sleep in, but didn't have much luck.

In weather news, October 3 has made it into the 10-day forecast, and right now, it looks great. I suppose I would prefer overcast to sunny, but if the temperature doesn't go above 57, I'll be really, really happy.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Three Sons

Well, this is interesting. Some time in the spring, we adopted three new kittens: Aslan, a boy; Merlin, a boy; and Rhia, a girl. Yesterday, we took them in to get neutered and spayed, respectively. Only the vet took a better look at Rhia and decided he had better be neutered, too. It was the same vet who originally confirmed he was a girl. So now we have three boy kittens, one of which has a strangish name. We're still deciding whether to rename him. Hell, we're still getting used to thinking of her as "him".

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Days 1216 and 1217

I don't know whether this semester is actually busier earlier than previous semesters, or whether old age is just catching up to me. But I'm feeling seriously run down, and I have a long way to go, yet.

I ran four miles yesterday, and six more today, so add 10 miles to Joyceville, and that's where I am. No picture, because I'm away from my home computer. Tonight is the first exam in calculus. About 40 of my 50 students have come and gone, and no one's head exploded, so I guess it wasn't too hard. Now I'll have to grade the damned thing.

The marathon is 10.5 days away. Not quite close enough to show up in the 10-day weather forecast. It's looking good at this point. There is about a week of cool, dry weather leading into the marathon. Unless they're wrong, of course.

Look for no post tomorrow, because I don't plan to run. Then no post on Friday, because I have to go up to Madison for a meeting in the afternoon, and I will be home late. But I'll get caught up on Saturday.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Day 1215 -- Joyceville

This is a little sad. Gary and Ray Ellis have a whole page of Canadian trucking companies that have folded or gotten bought out. Network trucking, seen here, was based in Mississauga, but the photo was taken in Joyceville, and so labeled.

Medium long run this morning, almost 16 miles. I reflected that if the weather is like this in Milwaukee in two weeks, it's going to be a very pleasant marathon. It was cool and overcast, with just a hint of rain for a few minutes. I felt strong for ten miles, and then struggled a little with the last six. But I'm happy with what I did.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

An Open Letter to Academic Administrators Everywhere

A college faculty is hard to lead. They are all highly intelligent, and used to an awful lot of freedom in their everyday decisions. Many of them are stubborn as hell. If you pushed a typical college faculty off a cliff, 10% of them would fall up, just to establish the principle of academic freedom. So the number one rule leading a college faculty has got to be: Don't pick a fight with the faculty over trivial stuff. You can't possibly win. You'll get a small handful who will grudgingly cooperate, a larger group that will be outright defiant, and a very large group that will simply ignore you. And a lot of people from all three groups will take it as further evidence that you are a clueless pencil-pusher who has no idea what goes on in a college classroom.

I can think of situations in which you should tackle the faculty.

  1. When you have a legal obligation or a mandate from further up the administrative food chain. "I know you don't like it, folks, but we have to do it."
  2. When you have some actual power to enforce. "If we don't get cooperation with the new policy, we won't be able to fund Project X. Take your pick."
  3. When you have strong support from vocal and respected campus leaders. "On the recommendation of the Faculty Senate, I am instituting the following policy."
  4. When your position is so morally compelling that you couldn't do anything else. "I cannot in good conscience support the current policy."

It helps if you have more than one of the above.

Note, oh administrator, than I'm not claiming that this is the way things should be. It's the way things are. And if you don't recognize it, you're going to have a very hard time.

Days 1213 and 1214 -- Kingston

I found this photo of the Old Courthouse in Kingston, Ontario, at a rather unexpected place: the School of Science and Engineering at the University of Edinburgh. It's from the personal page of some guy who traveled to Canada back in 2005. It's a nice shot, though.

And where have I been? Thursday, I slept in. That's two Thursdays in a row. I don't know why. Wednesday isn't any harder than any other day. I got up Friday and had a nice medium-long run. It was just what I needed to get me through the day. There was thunder and lightning early this morning, so I turned off the alarm and slept in again. But I was cranky in the morning, so I ran a quick three before lunch, which again got me through the day. But barely. Just barely.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Days 1211 and 1212 -- Loyalist

Welcome to Loyalist, ON, "a growing community of 15,000+ people situated on the north shore of Lake Ontario between the Town of Greater Napanee and the City of Kingston." Seems as nice a place as any, I guess.

I ran a nice 10K yesterday, with a little speed through the middle part, then an easy 4 miles today. The weather continues to be great for running. I don't know how long it can keep it up.

In non-running news, I'm keeping busy at school. A lot of meetings. A lot of grading. So I've been home in the evenings, but haven't had a lot of energy for blogging.


Monday, September 13, 2010

Day 1210 -- Napanee

Well, it's been a busy couple of days.

Yesterday started, of course, with a long run. 23.7 miles, to be accurate. I left the house at about 4:30, and didn't get back until 9:45. I can surely make the marathon distance. It's only a couple miles further than I ran yesterday. But, as I said two weeks ago, it's not clear that I will be as fast as I'd like to be. This will likely be my slowest marathon ever, and I'm OK with that. I ran--well, shuffled--the last three miles yesterday without stopping. If I can do that again at the marathon in three weeks, I think it will be a victory, no matter how slow my overall time is.

Anyway, shortly after I got home and changed, Mrs. Jogger and I hopped into the car and drove up to Spring Green for an American Players Theatre production of All's Well that Ends Well. As always with APT, it was excellent. But unfamiliar. My records say that Mrs J and I saw this play in Stratford, ON, in the late '80's, but you couldn't prove it by me. I'll be damned if I remember anything about that production, or anything about the plot of AWTEW at all. It seemed brand new to me.

When we got home, I sat down to watch the end of the Packers game (They won!) and grade. And grade. And grade. So I didn't get a chance to blog last night. But, since I didn't run this morning, I haven't fallen behind. Not really.

Above, a mural "Archways to Napanee", from

Friday, September 10, 2010

Day 1209 -- Trenton

Just beyond Quinte West is Trenton. In fact, they seem to be pretty well linked. You can see this picture of the Welcome to Trenton sign says "Quinte West" at the top. And when I was searching for pictures of Quinte West, I found at least one building that was called something like the Quinte West Medical Clinic but had a Trenton address. Wikipedia says that Trenton is "a community in Southern Ontario in the municipality of Quinte West." Not real helpful. But if you click through to the page for Quinte West, you find out that Quinte West is another amalgamated town, formed from Trenton, Frankford, Murray, and Sidney. I don't know why they didn't just call it Trenton-Frankford-Murray-Sidney.

Anyway, I ran six and a half miles this morning, with six hill sprints thrown in. It was a good workout, and now I'm thinking I'll skip tomorrow's workout, to make sure I have a good long run on Sunday.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Day 1208 -- Quinte West

The City of Quinte West has this nice photo of the Ontario Provincial Police station. Contrary to rumor, I'm not fleeing from the Mounties. I'm just running past.

I ran yesterday. I got up and ran a nice, easy six. It was still nice and cool, and the wind had died down, so it was a great day for a run. I didn't get time to post last night. However, I overslept this morning. I forgot to set my alarm. Some time in the middle of the night, I rolled over and wondered whether I had set the alarm, but I figured that if I hadn't, it was a good excuse to sleep in. Which I did. This may not have been the best decision, but it's not one that I can go back and change.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Day 1207 -- Wooler

Will S., on the Flickr page from which I stole this photo, says, "I just like this old convenience store sign." You know what, Will? I do, too.

It was bordering on chilly this morning. It was cool and dry, as it has been, but there was also a pretty gusty wind. But that's OK. It chilled the body, but not the soul. I had a good run, and overall a good day. I'm still getting used to this idea of going to the office and putting in a full day's work. It takes more out of me than I remember. j

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Day 1206 -- Brighton

Roger Kramer went on a "BiQue" ride in Canada back in 1997, and took this picture in Brighton. He had never been to Canada, before, and he seems to have enjoyed it.

I enjoyed my run this morning. With four weeks to go to the marathon, I took an off week, if you can call 16 miles an off week. The weather was still gorgeous, and I felt good. I was a bit faster than my last long run, but not fast, by any stretch.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Day 1205 -- Alnwick/Haldimand

Maybe I ought to go to Ontario for real. Here's a website devoted to the Waterfront Trail along the Canadian shores of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River. They describe this section of the trail as "a pastoral paradise".

It felt like paradise here in Joggerville this morning. A front came through Thursday night, and Friday was the first genuinely cool day in months. Of course, Friday was a scheduled day off, but that's OK. It was still cool this morning. In fact, it was about a perfect day for running. About 50F, dry, and still. If the weather is like this for the Lakefront Marathon, I may just make it.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Day 1204 -- Cobourg

I love The World's Largest Collection of the World's Smallest Versions of the World's Largest Things, but they don't really have a research department. If someone claims to be the "world's largest", they believe it. They list as the World's Largest Apple the one in Cordelia, Georgia, which Wikipedia says is "7 feet high". I don't know whether that includes the pedestal.

I can't find the actual measurements for the apple near Cobourg, ON, but according to Roadside America, it has an "observation deck on top, and a restaurant inside". That's bigger than 7 feet high. The photo of the Cobourg apple, above, comes from nonamedufus.

The photo of the Cornelia apple, below, comes from notduck.

When I hit the track this morning, it was basically 100% humidity. It wasn't actually raining, but there was a thick fog, and dew was forming on things as I watched. The fog lifted a little during my ten 800 m intervals, but it was still humid enough for me.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Day 1203 -- Port Hope

This photo of a street in Port Hope is from a montage of "Pictures of Ontario" at You'll have scroll down using the thumbnails on the right to see it, but it came up pretty high in the Google Image search.

Today was an easy run. We had a little rain overnight, so it was a little cooler and less humid, but still not terrific. And I certainly didn't want to overdo it. But it was a good run, to gear me up for the last day of prep before classes start.