Waging a war with water

water

A soon-to-be new best friend?

You know those people who always seem to be chugging from their Nalgene bottles, espousing the benefits of drinking 9,000 gallons of water a day? I am not one of those people.

I wish I was. I really do. I just really don’t like drinking water. I make sure to get every last drop out of my coffee mugs, but when it comes to plain old agua, I have to force myself to drink even four of the eight recommended glasses a day.

As you can imagine, this aversion to water poses quite a problem for a runner, especially when the temperature rises. I try to give myself pep talks about how much easier my runs are when I’m hydrated, but it’s still a struggle. Sports drinks help somewhat, but I find many to be dehydrating.

I know it sounds like an odd problem, but I also know I’m not the only one — there are plenty of articles online about learning to love the taste of water (there are some good tips here and here).

I’m making it my goal to drink more water this …

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Barefoot in the park?

To me, the idea of running barefoot is like reading the “Twilight” series as an adult. I guess I understand why some people do it, but it definitely isn’t for me.

To justify the idea of pounding the pavement with unshod feet, barefoot runners point to studies supporting the idea that their natural running form is is compromised by the constraints of padding. But all I can think of every time I think I come close to trying the barefoot thing is that I like my feet clean and rusty nail-free.

It was nice, then, to read this recent New York Times blog post making the case for running shoes. The piece references a study wherein 12 men with extensive barefoot running experience were asked to run in both lightweight running shoes and in socked feet with small weights attached to the tops of their feet, equaling the weight of the shoes.

The study concluded that when barefoot runners and runners with shoes carried the same weight on their feet, barefoot running used almost 4 percent …

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What races are you running to prepare?

The 5K Pack Hike in Lawrenceville is Saturday, May 5, 2012.  Photo by Jason Getz

The 5K Pack Hike in Lawrenceville is Saturday, May 5, 2012. Photo by Jason Getz

Now that the mad dash to register for the AJC Peachtree Road Race lottery is over (Good luck — may the odds be ever in your favor!), it’s time to start looking ahead to the actual race.

If you’ve never done an organized run, it might not be a bad idea to do a 5K to prepare for the PRR. Sure, a 5K is only half the distance, but it’ll help get you in the organized running mindset and give you an idea of what to expect come race day in terms of running in a big group, packet pickup and fighting people for port-a-potties. And it’s just a nice way to motivate yourself as the weather gets more humid (Mom would be so disappointed if you skipped the race you paid $30 to enter).

There are a ton to choose from in the next few months, including the Run for Orphans 5K in Alpharetta Saturday, March 31 (it’s also a Peachtree qualifier if you want to use the time toward next year’s PRR registration); the …

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The importance of start wave placement times

Submit a start wave placement time -- or live to regret it! -- Photo by Johnny Crawford, jcrawford@ajc.com

Submit a start wave placement time — or live to regret it! — Photo by Johnny Crawford, jcrawford@ajc.com

It’s hard to believe it’s already time to register for the AJC Peachtree Road Race…it seems like only yesterday that we were discussing our favorite — and just a few not-so-favorite — moments from last year’s race. With the deadline for registration fast approaching (you have until 11:59 p.m. Thursday, March 22 to get in on this — register now before it’s too late, go go go!), it’s time we had a frank talk — go ahead, sit down — about submitting start wave placement times.

I learned the importance of this the hard way last year, when I apparently didn’t enter the correct time from a PRR qualifying race and ended up getting a less-than-desirable start time. So, learn from my mistake — that’s what I’m here for (well, that and complaining about having to do training runs in ridiculously high humidity). In the “Start Wave Placement”  area of the registration form, make sure …

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AJC Peachtree Road Race lottery closes soon

The lottery entry system for the AJC Peachtree Road Race will close at 11:59 p.m. Thursday.

Go to http://www.ajc.com/sports/peachtree-road-race/ to register.

Winning entrants will be notified March 26 by email.

Winning entrants can pick up their numbers on July 2 or July 3 at the Peachtree Health and Fitness Expo at the Georgia World Congress Center, or they can pay $7.50 to have it mailed.

Those wishing to run in  a group of as many as 10 people may select “Group” when they enter the lottery. If their group is selected, each participant will be slotted into the appropriate start wave based upon their submitted finished time.

Atlanta Track Club members will receive guaranteed entry opportunity into the race as long as their memberships are current as of Feb. 1. “Streakers,” those who have participated in at least 10 AJC Peachtree Road Races, will receive special consideration if they aren’t selected in the lottery.

The registration fee is $35.

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Peachtree Road Race names two charity partners

Operation Homefront Georgia and Kilometer Kids were named today as the official charity partners for the AJC Peachtree Road Race. This is the first year that the Atlanta Track Club, which organizes the July 4 race, has named charity partners.

Operation Homefront, based in East Cobb, provides emergency assistance to military families and wounded veterans in Georgia.

Kilometer Kids, an Atlanta Track Club group, is an incentive-based youth running program. It was started in 2007 and now helps more than 2,800 kids from 53 schools in at-risk neighborhoods in Atlanta.

The money raised through the AJC Peachtree Road Race, the world’s largest 10K, will benefit both charities.

Those interested in raising money for the charities, or a charity of their choice, can do so through the online site CrowdRise.com, according to the Atlanta Track Club.

Charities interested in raising funds  through the AJC Peachtree Road Race should email Peachtree@CrowdRise.com by March 15 with this …

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AJC Peachtree T-shirt designs accepted until Feb. 28

Organizers of the AJC Peachtree Road Race will accept submissions for the T-shirt contest until Feb. 28. For more information on how to enter, go to www.peachtreeroadrace.org/event-information/t-shirt-contest.

The five finalists, selected by judges from the Atlanta Track Club, the AJC and local graphic artists, will be revealed on www.ajc.com/peachtree on March 15.

The public has until April 30 to vote on their favorite design. The winning design will be unveiled on the Fourth of July, race day.

“The unveiling of the T-shirt design at the finish of the AJC Peachtree Road Race has become a cherished tradition at the Fourth of July event, and it’s always wonderful to be able to showcase the work of talented artists through the AJC Peachtree Road Race T-shirt design contest,” said Tracey Russell, Executive Director of the Atlanta Track Club, said in a statement. “The contest also provides a fun way for event participants and Peachtree fans to have a say in what’s …

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AJC Peachtree Road Race lottery opens Thursday

Lottery registration for the 43rd AJC Peachtree Road Race will open at 7 a.m. Thursday and will stay open until 11:59 p.m. Thursday, March 22. The 10k race, which features 60,000 runners, will be run on the Fourth of July. Go to http://www.ajc.com/sports/peachtree-road-race/ to register.

Entrants for the race will be randomly selected after the lottery closes. Entrants will receive an email by March 26 with the results. A searchable database will also be on www.peachtreeroadrace.org and www.ajc.com/peachtree on March 26.

Entry is $35 plus processing fees.  Winning entrants can pick up their numbers on July 2 or July 3 at the Peachtree Health and Fitness Expo at the Georgia World Congress Center, or they can pay $7.50 to have it mailed.

Those wishing to run in  a group of as many as 10 people may select “Group” when they enter the lottery. If their group is selected, each participant will be slotted into the appropriate start wave based upon their submitted finished …

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PRR rewarded for “Green” initiatives

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Peachtree Road Race has been awarded “Green” certification by the Council for Responsible Sport.

The event is the largest race to achieve the status, which measures the environmental impact of an event in six categories: waste, climate, materials and equipment, community and outreach, health promotion, and innovation.

To achieve certification, the 2011 AJC Peachtree Road Race increased its total recycled waste from 22,802 pounds in 2010 to 41,873 pounds. That effort included collecting all water cups along the course and gathering approximately 12,000 timing tags after the race. Leftover food was distributed at local shelters. The increase in recycled materials brought the weight of trash per participant sent to the landfill to 0.52 pounds, down from 0.61 pounds per participant in 2010.

The Atlanta Track Club, the race’s organizing body, also paired with GreenSneakers to collect close to 900 pairs of running shoes to be given to low-income …

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So…how’d it go?

ajcpeachtree.0705JGHappy post-PRR day! Hope everyone had a great Fourth of July and a great run. After all the build up to the main event, it’s kind of hard to believe it’s over. As a Peachtree Road Race newbie, I’m happy to say I had such a good experience that I’m already looking forward to next year’s race. I was impressed at how well-organized everything was and had an awesome time people watching — and of course celebrating post-race with a giant brunch. Here are some of my highlights — and just a couple of lowlights — from yesterday:

THE GOOD:

The flag: Seeing the giant American flag hanging from the crane at the starting line was an inspiring way to start the race.
The costumes: There were the expected red, white and blue get-ups, which were nice, but I loved the unexpected — the group of guys dressed as bald eagles, the girls in nude body suits and neon wigs who made me do a double take, the runners in head-to-toe colored spandex suits. It was a fun way to distract myself when I was …

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