Monday, October 24, 2016

Training 10/24-10/30

10/24- It has become increasingly clear that ATP must be cut out entirely at least for the time being.  Did just 1 Mile untimed on Wisteria and it was total crap.  Still no OAT results.  I was supposed to get them in 2-3 weeks.  It's been 3 weeks since I sent my sample to the lab.  Tomorrow, it will be a better with or without test with low dose ATP.  I am over 1100 miles on the year, which is higher than I did all year in 2015.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Training 10/17-10/23

10/17- 2 miles on Wisteria in 18:36 (9:18 pace). No panic.  Biotin is the culprit.  I need it to tolerate more Cal citrate but mega doses cause problems.  There is a tolerable upper limit.  Extra citrate had no real effect one way or the other and neither did Mag or B-12.  That's good news.  I really didn't want to have to deal with ratios again.  I'll get more answers from the OAT test results, which should arrive in the mail any day now.

10/18- Reduced the Biotin dose and felt no better.  Workout was actually slightly worse.  2 miles on Lakeshore in 18:40 (9:20 pace) over flatter terrain.  That does it.  The Biotin will be cut out altogether and I expect that my citrate tolerance will diminish.  The OAT test results cannot come soon enough.

10/19- AM- Not much better.  Gold's 2 in 17:48 (8:54 pace).

PM- Trak Shak 3 in 26:24 (8:48 pace).  Only mildly better than yesterday.  Biotin has yet to clear.  I've learned today that it is high in sulfur so that's probably why I can no longer tolerate it.  Not good news.  I'll be better tomorrow but the trouble with sulfur remains.  The test results can't get here soon enough.

10/20- AWFUL again.  This time the culprit was not enough Cal citrate.  Just like before Tahoe, my demand has spiked and it's likely a 1 day blip.  Gold's 2 mile in 17:24 (8:42 pace).  I have not been under the Mendoza line since last Saturday.  Still no results in the mail.

10/21- Glimmer of hope.  Mile repeats at Gold's
Mile 1- 8:22
Mile 2- 7:38 (after 1 ATP cap)
Mile 3- 6:57 (after 2 more ATP caps)
An ATP deficit could be responsible for both oxalates and sulfate wasting.  STILL NO RESULTS

10/22- Very poor.  This ends the streak of 6 straight successful long runs.  Called it after 6 miles in 57:57 (9:39 pace).  Never did feel good but it got worse after each mile.  First half was 26:xx then faded to 31:xx on the back 3.  Odds are it was too much ATP too soon.

10/23- HORRIBLE!  2 miles in 17:54 (8:57 pace).  I came through the Mile marker in 7:55 then popped a 2nd ATP pill and an all out effort got me under 10:00 for Mile 2.

Weekly summary:
-22 miles on the week.  Needless to say, I am not happy about this but not as angry as I would have been earlier in the year.  I'll bet that my Iron is under control and I need ATP but have to keep the dose low to prevent a detox reaction.  I NEED THE OAT TEST RESULTS.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Remaining States Part 3

I am now ALL IN on going for all 50 states.  I have 22 to go right now. Here they are by region:

Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland.
I've got a lot of work to do here but fortunately, there are several opportunities to double with Saturday/Sunday combos.  1 trip, 2 races, 2 states.  Maybe even 2 countries.
I may actually repeat Pennsylvania because it's the only one that I failed to break 2 hours.

Midwest and Heartland:
Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota.

Far West:
Montana, Utah, New Mexico, Washington, Wyoming, Hawaii

I have my heart set on a few of these but some others are more flexible depending on how it works with my schedule.  I'm already looking forward to the next big trip.  Here are the ones that are most definitely on my radar:

New York- United Airlines NYC half in mid-March.  It's a lottery but I've heard the odds of getting in are pretty good if you are from out of state.  The course begins in Central Park and goes through Times Square before ending near Wall Street all in Manhattan.  I'm entering the lottery for 2017 and I'll find out by early December.

Maryland- Island 2 Island in April- Point to point course from Ocean City to Assateague Island.  This one will be special to me because I spent a summer in nearby Salisbury but haven't been back since 2002.  If I don't get into NYC, this will be the Spring destination race in 2017.  I'll road trip from Philly up and down the Delmarva peninsula.

Connecticut- ING Hartford in October- This one is attractive because I haven't been here since I was a toddler and have no memory of it at all.  Also appealing is that there is a half the next day in Newport, Rhode Island, which is less than 2 hours away.

South Dakota- Spearfish Canyon in July.  This one is at 5,000 feet elevation but it's all gently downhill so it won't be nearly as tough as Tahoe.  It's located less than 1 hour from Mt. Rushmore, which is a must see.  This one is the front runner for the summer destination race.

Michigan- Detroit Free Press in October.  I planned on doing it this year but it worked out better with Tahoe.  It'll be in the running for next year as well.  I'll be more likely to do it if I'm in top shape but if I'm in good but not great condition, I'll likely opt for a double somewhere else.  The course begins and ends in downtown Detroit but goes into Windsor, Ontario for 4 miles en route.

Washington- Rock n Roll Seattle in June- I could see a Mariners game, Mt. Ranier and road trip to Vancouver, British Columbia.  It will be a nice break from the Alabama heat and it's the dry season out there too.  It would be really cool if there's a Saturday/Sunday combo in Seattle and Vancouver but I might be willing to spend a whole week out there if they are a week apart.

New Mexico- Thunder Half in Santa Fe in September- This is another mild altitude downhill course.  I'll road trip to Amarillo, Texas.  West Texas has an entirely different flavor than East Texas.

Now here are the flexible options:
Wyoming- There are 3 in Jackson Hole near the Grand Teton Mountains just south of Yellowstone.  All 3 will be basically the same course.  2 are in June and one is in September.

Hawaii- Can't go wrong here.  Something in Honolulu would be easier logistically.  It would be really cool to land here and break up a trip to Australia.

Utah- I've got 3 options near Salt Lake City in May, June and September.  I'd prefer May so I won't have to deal with training in the heat.  All are screaming downhill courses, which I've learned does not mean easy.  Still, I feel this is my best chance to BQ so I'll save it.

Montana- I've got the option to run Yellowstone and Grand Teton (Wyoming) but they are a full week apart.  A combo with a Calgary race could be do-able even if they are a week apart because there is so much to see with Glacier National Park and the Canadian Rockies.

Minnesota & Wisconsin- There should be a good chance to double here.  Ideally, I'd want to do something in the Twin Cities with Eau Claire but could stretch it to Madison.  Milwaukee would be tough.  Most likely, it will be a late Spring- early Summer weekend.

Nebraska & Iowa- Des Moines with either Lincoln or Omaha should work but I'll take just about any Saturday/Sunday combo here.

Maine/New Hampshire/Vermont/Quebec- There could be 2 doubles here.  Pretty much anywhere in all 4 can be done on back to back days.  I know of one race in NH that ran the day before RnR Montreal.

Massachusetts- Y'all know the one I really want to do but that's looking remote at this stage.  It's got to be a Boston race and there's one around Memorial Day that looks good.  I may not even have to rent a car because the course is right next to the airport but I'll probably want to see Cape Cod.

New Jersey & Delaware- It doesn't really matter where either one is located.  It will be close enough for a Saturday/Sunday combo.  I'll use Philly as my hub and do some touring there.

EDIT: The phone duty schedule came out at work today and it will make it tough to do South Dakota. I'm leaning towards Grand Teton instead.  I'll take a full week off and do a different race in Montana the following Saturday.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


-ADHS (adrenal) dosage has been reduced from 6 pills down to 3.
-Feeling more calm and less angry about my situation
-Less dependent on methylation supplements.
-Calcium Citrate up to 500 mg. is tolerated.
-Intolerance to Sulfur is GONE
-A bit itchy with a few small break outs (not on my face)
Points 1-3 are directly related to improved Iron regulation.  Points #4-6 have to do with oxalates.

Let’s take a look back at Iron.  According to ARL and Dr. Wilson, Toxic Iron levels can raise tissue Na on a hair test, which indicates adrenal over-activity.  That’s why I needed mega doses of adrenal suppressants for so many years.  Though unconfirmed, the fact that I have reduced the dose of the modulator strongly suggests that I am heading towards balance.  Also encouraging is the fact that extra pills beyond 3 appear to make little difference one way or the other.  Since it’s a modulator, it SHOULD not hurt to take too many.  If it does, enzymes are to blame.  A suppressant or stimulant is more likely to cause sensitivity.  Also, according to ARL, Iron excess can mess with enzyme binding sites.  It is definitely plausible that it was Iron that at least played a role in the defective enzymes, which caused such instability.
In yesterday’s workout, I did a half mile without methylation in 3:47 then improved to 3:30 with it at the same effort.  That’s still a significant difference and I will likely still need at least some methylation support because of my genetics.  If I can tolerate Methyl B-12, I “might can” get by with a single active B-complex rather than having to take the B-vitamins separately.  That would save both money and space in my cabinet.  If not, Yasko’s Ultimate B may be tolerated now. 

Going back to my last Iron panel, my serum Iron was less than 10 percent higher than optimal.  The saturation percentage at 43% is still on the high side (33% is ideal) but a big improvement over the 61% on the first test.  I am going to reduce the dose of Curcumin to occasional, stop Yasko’s SHMT&AHCY and add IP-6 with the goal of maintaining or slightly reducing Iron while lowering Ferritin, which was approaching the danger zone last test at 248.  I’ll re-test Ferritin in about 4 weeks.

I’ve had brutal sensitivity to Calcium citrate due to oxalate dumping.  Without it, I was awful but with too much, I was just as bad and had to break open capsules to get the optimal dose.  Thanks to Biotin, my tolerance has improved and I can take up to 250 mg (full pill).  The problems that I had with sulfur were due to the wasting of sulfates and I believe oxalates were the culprit.   If I take even 1 citrate pill, the problems with sulfur are gone.  I expect to get the OAT test results back possibly by the end of next week.  It may reveal other problems but sky high oxalates with a Biotin deficiency is highly probable.  The break outs are a detox reaction and I’m not worried about that at all.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Training 10/10-10/16

10/10- Trak Shak 7.5 mile loop in 61:50 (8:15 pace) plus a cool.  Hilly route and I feel like I am nearly recovered from the race.  One piece of good news is that the Biotin appears to be increasing my tolerance for citrates.  Took a full pill at the 3 mile mark (24:30)  then proceeded to run the next 4.5 in 37:20, which is only 8 seconds slower per mile so that's not a significant difference.  Took some IP-6 (to lower ferritin) after the run, which also appears to be tolerated.  A couple questions remain which will be addressed later.

PM- Gold's 3 in 22:11 (7:24 pace).  Even pace.  Took some IP-6 and at the very least, it was tolerated.  Though it was not a night and day difference, I did feel some degree of benefit.  Also, I have safely cut the ADHS dosage from 6 pills to 3.  Tomorrow, I will see how dependent I am on methylation support.  The reason for the changes is improved iron status.  A more detailed post is forthcoming.

10/11- AM- Methylation test under a time crunch.  Did 1 Mile in 7:17.  First half without any methylation was not half bad at 3:47 then improved to 3:30 with it.  That means that while I do still need it, it won't be a disaster if I do not take it.

PM- Lakeshore 5 in 38:46 (7:45 pace).  Felt strong early but faded in the back half (19:00-19:46) and felt overstimulated.  I felt clearly "different" today and I interpret that as good.

10/12- This was a planned rest day but I wanted a small test.  Under a time crunch, I did 1.5 miles on Jemison Trail in 11:27 (7:38 pace) plus a cool.  Even pace but didn't feel right.  Felt overstimulated and like the detox is going too quickly.  I'm backing it down to 250 mg of citrate.

10/13- Wanted to run intervals but the track was closed for football (no surprise).  Instead, I did 3 miles at Gold's at tempo effort.  Finished in 21:51 (7:17 pace).  Not horrible but something is clearly off.  I was out well but slipped to 7:30 in Mile 2 running nearly all but did rebound a bit at the end.  I'm betting there is something deeper and I need more than just citrate and Biotin to detox the oxalates.  Speaking of which, I should get the test results in 5-10 days.  Added a warm and cool

10/14- Lakeshore 5 in 37:25 (7:29 pace).  Very nice job.  This one felt SO MUCH easier than yesterday.  I credit the lowered dose of citrates and more IP-6.  This would be an "A" workout if I still graded myself.

10/15- 5th straight completed long run.  This one wasn't pretty but I made it.  10 miles in 84:41 (8:28 pace).  Bad news is I was never in sync at any time during the run.  Good news is I never collapsed.  Pace never slipped below 8:45 even on the hill that sucks.  Odds are the citrate needs to be reduced for a morning run.  I probably would have done better in the afternoon.  I did not feel any soreness from yesterday's workout.

10/16- 4 miles on Lakeshore in 34:36 (8:39 pace).  Very much different than yesterday.  This time, I was out well (7:30 1st mile) then faded in Mile 2 and collapsed in Mile 3-4.
I cut the citrate dose and raised the Biotin.  If I take enough Biotin, which I did not yesterday, I should have no problem with the citrates.  Detroit was this weekend.  Good call to run Tahoe instead.

-42 miles on the week.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Lake Tahoe Road Trip Report

Whenever I go on a trip, it is not to relax.  I'm always on the go and looking to see as much as I can in a limited amount of time.  This one was no exception.

Wednesday 10/5-
Flight into Reno with a layover in Denver went without a hitch.  I landed at 12:30 local time, picked up my rental car (Hyundai Sonata) and headed west on I-80 to Sacramento as planned.  It was a beautiful drive through the Sierra Nevada Mountains with a brief stop in the town of Truckee, just across the California border.  Most impressive of all was the area around Donner Lake in which the elevation reached 7,000 feet but there was a view of a clear emerald body of water several thousand feet below the road.  Sorry, no pictures there.  Northern California is heavily forested with pine trees but among the leaves that did change, I saw some nice yellows and reds.
Truckee, California

Fortunately, I arrived in Sacramento before rush hour and scored a smokin' deal on a cheap hotel right in midtown.  From there, it was a nice walking tour of the city that included the business and commercial district, the Capitol mall and some pretty nice residential areas.  Dinner was at a random bar and grill in Old Town by the river where I chatted a bit with a SF Giants fan who got a little tipsy.  Overall impression: Aesthetically pleasing with lots of thick oak tress lining the streets and occasional rows of palms.  It has a nice climate too (perfect sunny and 75 that day) but I could never live there because the culture is radically different from home (no offense).

CA State Capitol in Sacramento

Thursday 10/6-
Left Sacramento and hit some rush hour traffic but it was a smooth and beautiful ride on US-50 into Tahoe.  It's 72 miles around the lake that straddles the border of California and Nevada.  I went north on the Nevada side so I could check out the race course then came back around in California. Words can't describe the breath taking beauty of the crystal clear lake surrounded by mountains capped by a dusting snow.  In the movie Forrest Gump, the title character said that it was so clear that it almost looked like 2 skies one on top of the other.  That's not far off.  Pictures will never do it justice but some of my best shots are posted below.  Lunch was at a BBQ grill in which I sat on a porch right next to the beach.  I stopped twice to go hiking and captured some more stunning images.  Most of the lake is crystal blue but in some areas near the bay, there is a definite emerald tint. My only irritation was a few construction delays. I settled into my hotel just after dark which was just a half mile from the bus stop that took us to the starting line.

View from Lunch
On the race course
Hiking trail 1
Hiking trail 2

Friday 10/7 (race day).  This was by no means a goal race but I still wanted a respectable time.  However, a poor effort certainly would not ruin the trip.  If I found myself struggling, I would ease up and take in the scenery.  The course was deceptively difficult.  Though it was net downhill, virtually all of the decline came in the first half (which also contained 2 nasty uphills) and the final 2 miles were all UPHILL, which came after having run predominantly downhill for an hour.  That trashes your quads.  If you've ever run at altitude, you know how much harder those climbs are versus at sea level.  As for the elevation itself, the higher it is, the greater the incremental effect.  Asheville, NC (2000 ft) won't even be noticeable.  In Denver (5200), you'll feel it but it's manageable.  This one began at 7100 feet then dropped as low as 6300 before climbing back another 150 feet or so at the end.   I was gasping for air almost immediately.

Pre-race selfie

Here are the early splits:
7:13- sharply downhill but WAY too fast.
7:29- better
8:40- uphill
7:46- back down and hope to hold it here.
7:42- fine
9:16- another nasty climb
7:58- back down, almost to the surface.
  From here, it became a gently rolling course with more gentle ups and downs.  My legs were trashed from going downhill and I could still feel the altitude.  From this point, I was done for.  I took periodic walk breaks to guard against a complete melt down and kept the pace around 9:20-9:30 until Mile 12. I then trudged my way through the last 2 miles uphill to finish in a time of 1:56:xx pretty much spent.

Finisher's medal

Not pleased with that but not overly upset either.  I could have done better with more conservative pacing early and a more even effort late but I lived to fight another day. The race was all in Nevada so I've checked off state #28 and this is by FAR the most scenic course I've done. This did NOT put a damper on the trip overall.  My honest assessment of my fitness is that even at sea level on a flat course, I'm not much better than 1:45. I am burdened by toxins similar to anti-freeze, which most definitely damages organs. Until I get my health all squared away, I don't see much improvement in the near future but expect my next lab test will reveal the smoking gun.

Headed back to Reno with stops in Carson City and Virginia City.  Once you get outside of Tahoe, Nevada has an entirely different feel than California.  It's a lot more barren with very few trees and shrubbery but strikingly beautiful in its own right especially around sunset.  I took about an hour to walk through the commercial and Capitol area in Carson City before a steep mountain up to Virginia City.  I wish I had more time there but all I could do was drive through.  It's a cool town with one major street set up to look like it did back in the Old West. Back to the Future fans may remember that's where Seamus McFly's brother was killed in a saloon.  LOL.  From there, I was treated to many stunning views on a winding mountain road into Reno.

NV State Capitol in Carson City
Scenic view outside of Virginia City, Nevada

In Reno, I took another walking tour of downtown through the business and entertainment district.  I did not mind being short on time here. I found a nice river walk but the main attraction there is the casinos.  I don't gamble and really don't understand the attraction.  I did walk inside one of them but only for a cheap dinner, which was nothing special.  A worker offered me a cocktail but I had to turn it down because I needed to get back to the hotel quickly so I could steal a few hours of sleep.  I had to get up super early for my return flight but again, it went without a hitch.

Up next:
I'm staying local for the rest of the year.  I may run NYC next Spring but if not, it will be something in the Northeast. or mid-Atlantic.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Training 10/3-10/9

10/3- COLLAPSE!  Gold's 3 in a pathetic 27:45 (9:15 pace).  I wanted to quit after an 8:30 first mile but stuck it out even though I got slower with every step.  No panic this time.  It is clear that my need for citrates is now TRENDING UP!  I was too aggressive with the cut and felt better after taking just a trace more when I got home.  Do I try the full pill again (250 mg) or do I need 150 instead?  It could be a very narrow range and I just hope I'll at least do okay on race day.

10/4- MASSIVE SHIFT!  Only 3 days out from race day?  I wouldn't have it any other way.
AM- Opened with a 10:28 Mile after taking a full pill last night but nothing in the morning.  Took another full pill and improved to 9-flat (MINUS 88)

PM- Trial and error intervals.  After 2 more pills, I was down to 7:57.  Another one dropped it to 7:27 then I got the idea to load with 4 more hoping that there was no such thing as too much.  NOT a good idea.  Slipped to 8:43 but it did get slightly better as it progressed.  Can I find the sweet spot?

10/5- Fight to Reno with a layover in Denver.  Drove to Sacramento for a walking tour.  No workout but I can tell that my need for citrate has diminished back to what it had been before.

10/6- Hiking in Lake Tahoe.  Did 1 mile of running on the trails as a shake out

10/7- Lake Tahoe half marathon on the Nevada side.  Finished in 1:56:31 (8:54 pace).  I underestimated the difficulty of the course and the effects of the altitude.  4th straight week that I have finished a double digit run.

10/8- 2 mile junk run untimed on Wisteria after getting back home.

10/9- Trak Shak 5 in 42:57 (8:35 pace) with fairly even splits.  No collapse.  Quads remain very sore but outside of that, I did not feel too bad.  Very little effort.  Tried Biotin, which is supposed to help oxalates and I seemed to benefit.

-30 miles on the week.

Friday, September 30, 2016

Iron Panel Test #2

Here are the raw numbers
Serum Iron- 119.  That’s a drop from 175 last time.  56 points (32 percent) down.  Optimal is 110 so astonishingly, I am not far off.  I went from being flagged as high to nearly optimal in just 5 weeks.  OUTSTANDING!

UIBC- 155.  That’s up from 110 last time.  45 points (41 percent) up.  Optimal is 220 so I still have a ways to go on this but if the current trend continues, I’ll be right where I need to be within another 2 months.  Again, this news is VERY GOOD.

Saturation Percentage- Drop from 61% down to 43%.  10 points north of optimal but again, EXCELLENT NEWS.  

TIBC- 274.  That’s a drop from 285 but that’s not enough to be significant.  It’s a bit below optimal (330) but not a cause for alarm.  Just keep the Iron where it is and continue to get the UIBC up.

Ferritin- 248.  This is a rise from 168.  Up 80 points (48 percent).  This is NOT good.  This number needs to be down around 50.  Again, it’s still within my lab’s “normal range” but as I’ve said repeatedly, Normal Does Not Mean Healthy!

Transferrin remained almost the same. 

What have I been doing?
-B6 (as P-5-P)
-B12 (hydroxyl, adenosyl)
-Occasional Apple Cider Vinegar
-Yasko’s SHMT & AHCY- This one contains an ingredient called Lactoferrin, which may be the reason for the rise in Ferritin.  It will be stopped.

2 out of the 3 indicators improved significantly but the rise in Ferritin is alarming.  I can try Rice Bran and if that doesn’t do it, it’s got to be blood donation.  Of course, simply stopping the Lactoferrin could do it.  As I said last time, my prior results were BAD!  However, it is highly unlikely that this is the smoking gun.  I want to see something WAY OVER THE TOP!  The OAT test is my best chance to find it.  The kit should arrive just before I leave or while I am at Lake Tahoe.  From that point, the results will be mailed directly to me within 3 weeks.  I’m on my own for the interpretation but am confident that I can acquire the knowledge to figure it out if I don’t already know.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Training 9/26-10/2

9/26- Gold's 5 in 37:45 (7:33 pace).  Good job.  Even pace with splits of 18:55-18:50 with plenty left in the tank at the end.  I still don't think I was at full strength after yesterday's excess citrate.  Until further notice, I'm sticking with 250 plus the Iron detox.  It could be a winner.

9/27- AM.  Spain Park Mile in 6:40.  I was on pace for 6:00 through 600 meters then fell apart.  Passed 800 in 3:04 and had nothing left after that so I shut it down and settled for a 3:36 on the back half.  Added a cool.

PM- Lakeshore 5 in 37:24 (7:29 pace).  1st half: 18:39, 2nd half: 18:45.  Solid performance.  This is the 3rd day in a row that I felt much better in the afternoon and evening than the morning.  That tells me that my citrate dose is still just a bit too high.  I will either cut it back from 250 to 200 or take it in divided doses but lean toward the former.

9/28- AM- 2 miles at Gold's in 15:24 (7:42 pace).  Struggled again despite taking only 200 mg of citrate.  Another idea is to take the full pill but take it at night.  Splits were 7:36-7:48 and I was working pretty hard at the end.  I'm taking the evening off but if I did run, I'd predict that I'd handle 5 @ 7:30ish again.  Took Curcumin when I got home and it made little difference.

PM- Rested as planned.  Took the Cal citrate at night so this was my 2nd dose.  I may struggle tomorrow but should have it regulated by the weekend.  Ordered the OAT test and I'm on my own for the interpretation.

9/29- Canterbury Loop.  Did 3.5 miles in 27:55 (7:58 pace) plus a half mile cool.  I was weakened by taking the double dose of citrate yesterday but still did okay. This was a hilly route and the effort was dialed back until the last half mile.  That tells me that even if my pills are a bit off, I'll still finish a half marathon.  I should get the Iron results tomorrow and my OAT test has been ordered.  The OAT is my best chance to find the "smoking gun" or a value that is WAY OVER THE TOP.

9/30- AM- Spain Park Mile in 6:35.  Only marginally better than last time.  This is unacceptable.  Changes need to be made.  We shall see if I am better in the afternoon.

PM- Really not much better.  Lakeshore 2.5 in 19:42 (7:53 pace).  Felt about the same, if not slightly worse than yesterday.  Good news is that I could finish a half mary now without a major meltdown.  Bad news is that it would be north of 1:50 and may not be much under 2:00.  I will try reducing the citrates.  If I do that, I may not be able to tolerate the Curcumin but based on my latest Iron test, I may not need it.  I will be quitting Yasko's Iron detox.

10/1- BTC social.  It was basically the Vulcan course plus an add on.  I ended up with 10 miles in 78:55 (7:54 pace).  Felt a good deal better than yesterday thanks to reducing the citrates fro 250 down to 150 and cutting out Yasko's pill.  I had something left in the tank too but decided to save it for race day next Friday.  Even pace with 8 of 10 miles under 8:00 and Mile 10 was my fastest at 7:38.

10/2- Lakeshore 5 in 38:24 (7:41 pace).  1st half: 19:05, 2nd half: 19:19.  Overall not bad at all.  No problem recovering from yesterday.  Good start and a good finish but the midsection was weak.  It still feels like my citrate dose is a bit too high.  If I drop it down to half a pill (125 mg), I will NOT be able to take Curcumin but hey, based on my last blood test, I may not have to.

Weekly summary:
37 miles on the week and I have passed 1,000 miles on the year.  I'm on pace for about 1,350, which is way off my PR of 2,092 but a big improvement over last year.  NO collapses this week but nothing particularly good either.  If I don't change anything, I predict a time just south of 1:50 at Lake Tahoe.  I should hope to be better than that.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Rave: Regional Accents

Imagine meeting somebody randomly on the street.  He or she might dress differently and have different interests or values but if you engage them in conversation and discover that you share a common native land, there’s a good chance of a connection.  In terms of U.S. regional accents, the Northeast, South and upper Midwest are particularly distinctive and I’ve grown to like them all.  I am partial to the South however and a strong southern accent on a woman who is attractive and intelligent will make me smile every time.  The only ones that I dislike (no offense) are the standard reporter voice and the valley girl/surfer that is unfortunately common among Millennials from coast to coast.

There are lots of variations within each region as well as within the same state.  I can tell the difference between north Alabama and south Alabama.  Same with Upstate and Low Country South Carolina.  Tidewater Virginia is VERY much different from its Appalachian region especially west of Roanoke.  However, all of them can be identified as Southern.  Within other regions, the story is the same.  A trained ear can distinguish between Philadelphia, New York and Boston.  Same with Detroit, Cleveland and Chicago but again, the region is easily identifiable. 
I have a pretty strong southern accent myself but it’s difficult to pinpoint it because I’ve spent at least 2 years in 4 different states (AL, SC, WV, PA).  In my travels, people have guessed that I was from anywhere from Kentucky to North Carolina and I’ve heard Texas and Louisiana as well.  It’s basically a non-issue for me here in Alabama and that’s how I like it.  In 10 years, I’ve only had 3-4 people comment on it at all and it was noticed to be “just a little bit different.”  Maybe someday, I’ll post a YouTube clip for anyone who is curious. 

Can you pick up a southern accent later in life if you were not born and raised here?  Some people will pick up different accents easier than others but my answer is yes.  It does depend on when and depends on where you move.  Most linguists say that your native speech sets sometime between about 13-15 years of age.  In my experience, that’s not always true.  One of the CPAs that I have dealt with at work claims that she moved here from Kansas City at 21 but you could have sworn that she was born and raised in Alabama.  Another is from Michigan and you can tell but there is a definite twang mixed in there.  A college friend from Maryland went to grad school near NYC and could have passed for a New Yorker within a few years but lost it when he moved back to the Mid-Atlantic.  I had more of an Appalachian sound in West Virginia but lost some of it back in South Carolina.  Once you are into your mid-late 20s however, it probably won’t change very much.

A lot of it depends on actual contact with native speakers.  If you were to move to a city such as Dallas, Charlotte or Atlanta with a high percentage of transplants, your speech probably will remain the same if not become more neutral.  Children who grow up there probably won’t have much of an accent either especially if their parents are transplants.  On the other hand, if you moved to Mississippi or Alabama where most of the population is native to the region, you probably will pick up some of the speech patterns even if you move there as a young adult.  In the Birmingham area, you are more likely to hear southern accents in outer suburbs such as McCalla or Gardendale than Homewood or downtown.  I do think that if you really like the region, you will be more likely to adopt its speech patterns at least subconsciously. 

Reaction to me when I travel outside the South:
Mostly positive overall.  I’ve gotten a lot of kind and flattering comments.  My favorite was from a guy who said that he would pay money for an extended audio recording.  LOL. I’ve made several friends randomly as a result of it as well.   However, there have been some negatives too.  I’ve been called a “hick” many times by northerners, which I find offensive because it implies that I am uneducated and have been stereotyped as such.  Good natured imitations are fine even if poorly done but if you carry it on for several minutes straight, it gets old and tired.  At the end of the day, I don’t mind people commenting on it but just don’t obsess.  I can have a sense of humor but expect to be taken seriously when the situation calls for it.  For those reasons, I don’t think I would want to live where my speech would be an issue.  Alabama is where I belong.