Saturday, May 3, 2008

the die is cast

I bought my plane ticket for Vancouver today. I arrive there the evening of the 26th and begin Kevin's Walk the following morning.

I also completed a training chart for the rest of my time here in Virginia. It gets me from where I am now-- walking 3.1mph for 10 miles, unencumbered-- to where I need to be: able to walk 30 miles with a 70-pound load on my back.

If any of my readers have schedules that permit them to meet up with me during my training (and I'll be training seven days a week), they should feel free to meet me at the Mile 0 marker of the George Washington Parkway bike path. On weekdays, I'll make an effort to leave the house around 7AM (possibly earlier); this means I'll be at the Mile 0 marker around 7:35AM or 7:40AM. I hit Mile 3 on the walk a little after 9:30AM. If you've been following the blog, you can roughly calculate my speed, and if you use Google Earth, you can figure out approximately where I'll be on the bike path as long as I consistently begin at 7AM.

Remember, when calculating where I am, that the walk from my house (whose location I won't disclose, for the sake of my family's privacy) to the Mile 0 marker is exactly two miles. Because I do about an 18-minute mile (i.e., slightly over 3mph), this means I'll have walked about 36 minutes by the time I hit Mile 0. Keep that in mind when trying to figure out where to meet me. Remember, too, that a three-hour walk means 90 minutes out, then about 90 minutes back home. If you position yourself too far along the path, you might not catch the fact that I've doubled back. One last thing: I expect my speed to go down as my encumbrance goes up. By the time I'm carrying 70 pounds on my back, I expect to be gallumphing along at a mere 2.5mph. Factor that into your calculations as well.

My training schedule:

May 4: (easy day) 2-hour walk (Mom's birthday, too!)
May 5: 4-hr walk, 10 pounds' encumbrance
May 6: 4-hr walk, 15 pounds
May 7: 4.5-hr walk, 20 pounds
May 8: 4.5-hr walk, 20 pounds
May 9: 5-hr walk, 30 pounds
May 10: 5-hr walk, 30 pounds
May 11: (easy day) 4-hr walk, 10 pounds
May 12: 5-hr walk,35 pounds (halfway point for time/distance and weight!)
May 13: 5.5-hr walk, 35 pounds
May 14: 6-hr walk, 35 pounds
May 15: 6-hr walk, 40 pounds
May 16: 6.5-hr walk, 40 pounds
May 17: 7-hr walk, 45 pounds (at least 20 miles walked)
May 18: (easy day) 6-hr walk, 30 pounds
May 19: 7-hr walk, 45 pounds
May 20: 8-hr walk, 50 pounds
May 21: 8.5-hr walk, 60 pounds
May 22: 9-hr walk, 65 pounds
May 23: 9.5-hr walk, 65 pounds
May 24: 10-hr walk, 70 pounds (at least 27 miles)
May 25: 10-hr walk, 70 pounds (try for 30 miles)

I don't expect I'll actually make 30 miles in the allotted time on the 25th, but I hope to give it a try. On the 26th, I won't be walking at all, of course: I'll be in transit to Vancouver!

Hope to see you on the path.


nostalgia: part 13

Here you have the final group of photos before I start showing you the pics from off my digicam. These photos were taken early in the spring 2008 term, back when we had a lot of students. Even so, one or two students are absent on the days these photos were taken, and later in the semester, quite a few students went missing as well.

Missing from the following photos is a pic of my Friday pronunciation class. That class lasted only six weeks; I have some good-bye video of them, which I'll upload to YouTube in due time.


ten miles

I walked up to the bike trail's three-mile marker today, which made the one-way trip exactly five miles. I started the walk at 8:42AM and finished at 11:50AM-- 188 minutes for ten miles, or 3.19mph.

My more athletically inclined readers will have to forgive me for talking about something they already know, but the concept of "walking off" a certain pain or discomfort is no BS. During the first mile or so of today's walk-- and this was true yesterday, too-- the muscles along my right shin were cramping up. Stop and stretch, or keep on going? was the question my body kept forwarding to my brain. The brain's reply: Are you kidding? Keep on going! (I'm certain my ego had a large role in the brain's reply.) Sure enough, by about the end of the walk's second mile, the cramping was gone, perhaps because the muscle group had warmed up enough to become more pliant.

I remember "running off" similar problems when I was younger. Though never much of a runner, I did jog through the latter half of high school, often running around the neighborhood block at night with my buddy Steve, who was a much better jogger than I was. I'd occasionally get the standard "stitch in the side," and the only remedy was just to keep on going.

It's nice to have rediscovered that little bit of wisdom. I would not, however, try to apply this wisdom to problems like, oh, needing to take a raging dump. That's not the sort of urge you should be fighting for two hours. I'm hoping that one of the side benefits of this stroll across the country will be a return to a long-forgotten regularity, a condition I currently simulate with the help of that magic powder, Metamucil. I say this because I'm a bit worried about the prospect of traipsing through American suburbia with an urge to lay out some logs, but with nary a port-a-john in sight.

Right... off to the shower, then.

Friday, May 2, 2008

nostalgia: part 12

The "nostalgia" series finally moves into 2008! We're almost caught up, folks! Below, you see photos from the winter 2008 term-- the bazaar and the various jjong-parties.

First up: bazaar pictures.

Next up: pics from the winter jjong-parties.


nostalgia: part 11

Scenes from the fall 2007 jjong-parties:

The first photo shows the remains of a meal prepared for my French class by the intrepid crew of the Cordon Bleu, located four floors above me.

The 7:40AM class, pictured below, had phenomenal attendance.