Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Vital Trail Training - Bearditude (Tude of the Beard)

I have been studying the pictures from the Appalachian Trail recently and have noticed that any training I may have done previously may have been focused on the wrong area. I stole the next 3 pictures from facebook to demonstrate my point. The 3 individuals pictured below from left to right are Fisherman's Friend, Crash, and Tumbleweed. They have all hiked from Maine down to Virginia thus far and I will be meeting up with them on Friday. I realize that they have grown into hardcore endurance athletes over the course of the trip but that is not the growth that I believe to be most crucial... they all share one common element that fuels their success.

Look here at Tumblweed (AKA BOB). Before departing he was incapable of any facial growth except for that small patch under the lower-lip now his beard required 2 quarts of 10W-30 every month to keep him running.

Don't even get me started on this guy. He has spent a 2 seasons up in Alaska perfecting the shore-to-shore beard but without the cold winds of the ocean I was uncertain if his beard would follow him down into the lower 48 but it has only grown more enchanting. One can tell from the photo that it now has the ability to control snakes.

In realizing my efforts up to this point have been on physical endurance and not beard awesomeness I have resorted to searching the past for signs of hope for my bearditude. The beard photoed below was captured last year but it has become my new focus of motivation for my current attempt.

Knowing that I hit the trail on Friday I have focused all of my efforts on starting a beard that will fuel my adventure and this morning I awoke with beginnings show below. I fell asleep clean shaven but with a dream of the future and after great physical exhaustion I now have a chance of survival on the trail.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Training for some hiking

Apparently I will be heading to do some hiking on the Appalachian Trail at the end of this week for an undetermined amount of time. I have a couple of friends that have made their way into Virginia and I am hoping not to slow them down too much so I have upped my game running and riding the bike here recently.

Sadly this means a little less of practicing my curls...

Hopefully a little sacrifice now pays off in the long run...

Friday, September 18, 2009

Shopping... wastin more time with the camera

To pass a day I accompanied my mother out for a day of shopping. It is a definite culture shock after spending most of the last year plus traveling around the globe to set foot into a humongous Sam's Club like the one pictured above:

I also got the experience of going to arts and crafts stores.... I recommend hiding from any place called the Hobby Lobby...

I actually chose to hide inside of the Hobby Lobby... yes, the plants were fake.

I was then asked to leave.... how was I supposed to know that these signs were to take home and hang up? I can read French and they reserve these signs for certain locations. Clean up on aisle 5.

They did recommend that I head back to the adult diaper aisle though... yes there was an entire aisle at Sam's for them.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Artsy Bar Pics - Sweet Shop

So nights at home can be a bit slow so I took some pics while out. Let it be noted that I am not capable with a camera.

The pour

Cheap pitcher of Amber Bock
Live tunes by this guy...

Del Sol - Worst Wings on the Planet?

Recently I headed out in my hometown on a Wednesday to hit up wing night at a local bar. I have long know that a wing night existed at Del Sol Lounge here in town and hot (buffalo) wings are one of my favorite foods on the planet, but this was my first trip down there for them due to my lack of interest in spending too much time there.

I ordered 12 of their traditional buffalo wings (no choice of hot or mild) and found myself yearning for the pieces of celery and carrot that sat near the edge. The meat itself was good but the sauce was terribly disappointing. It carried only a slight smell of spice but only managed to make the chicken feel oily. 12 wings were also discount priced at $6 so it really wasn't a special when you consider that you can get them around town (normally in the sacrilegious boneless variety for cheaper). Needless to say I will not be doing this again

There were 2 business travelers parked next to me and they ordered the wings before asking my recommendation. I actually felt bad when their order came out. I finished mine because I refused to waste the food but they finished maybe 3 of their 12 and then decided they would do dinner somewhere else.

So wing night is not worth it and on Friday's they want to charge $5 for entry to pay for the DJ. Just to put this in perspective... a DJ in WV can only be compared to going for a nutritious and pleasing meal at a strip club - enjoyable at first but at the end leave you running toward the door (a bathroom door in the case of the strip club).

Friday, September 11, 2009

Trail with Padre - Bald Eagle

In my new pursuit of fitness I hit the trail with Padre to log a few miles on the bikes. Why join a gym during the summer around here?

Of course I took the faster/lighter bike because he logs a lot more miles a year than I do.

At mile marker 8 on the trail we looked across the river and spotted what we believe to be a bald eagle. There are a few that live near here though neither of us have spotted one here before. I managed a quick if blurry pic from where I was at before he flew off but he definitely looked the part. (On the rock in the center... click on the pic to blow it up).

Here are the stats from the ride. I logged 16 miles in total and dranke1.5 bottles of water (I am a little out of shape still).

I did manage to post the fastest speed of the day with 24.62 mph so that was a plus.

Sadly Hector couldn't make this trip but I might have him out again tomorrow...

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Driving my hometown... video

Hittin the trail - again

In the pursuit of getting into shape I headed back down to the Greenbrier River Trail today with my training partner (Hector) and got in 4 weighted miles of hiking and a nice swim in the river.

I really should try and come down here more often.

Now I just need to make myself do a little more in a day so that I can be in better shape by the end of the month even if I know that my training partner is far ahead of me.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

College Football Kickoff - WINGS

To mark the opening game of West Virginia University Mountaineer football I decided that some buffalo wings were in order so I make up 4+ pounds of meat.

The finished product was a sight to behold

I also had my own cooler to keep my PBR cold and refreshing

I took the food down to Joshua's where we demolished it

Here is Josh sitting in front of his massive television that we watched the Mountaineers beat Liberty on

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Training on the Trail

I am currently looking ahead to the end of this month when I plan on heading to the Appalachian Trail to meet up with Bob and Russell for some hiking. In the spirit of being bored and out of shape I have decided to train a bit here locally on the River Trail.

I took a training partner with me to keep me going. This is Hector.

We only put in 4 or 5 miles but I did load down my pack to 25 lbs and will build up the distance and weight over the course of the month to get myself a little bit more prepared.

It is easy to train where I live because this is the average scenery.

I am hoping to do most of the state of Virginia when I meet up with the duo of Tumbleweed and Fisherman's Friend (Trail Names) so every step I take preparing will have to buy me an extra day out on the trail.

Where I'm From

Here are just a couple of shots from the small town life that I am back to. This first one is from the main stoplight in the center of town... the Brits should not that we drive on the right side of the road.
And here is one coming back from the main drag to the grocery store, banks, and fast food etc.