Races, Graduations, Birthdays, iPads, Barefoot Running, and the World Cup…

To all my faithful readers, well, to my wife, Anna, I apologize for the time that has passed since my last post. The last month and a half have flown by. It’s apparent that I’m not an awesome, daily blogger. I’d like my content to have a little “meat,” though, and I fear a daily post may not be much to write home about. So, where to start…I’ll do my best to give a quick run-down and highlight reel.

Indianapolis Mini-Marathon…

I ran the May 8th Indianapolis Mini-Marathon. Despite the bitterly cold temperatures and fierce winds, I ran a PR of 87 min, 15 sec and finished 409 overall (according to the results on their website). I had two goals in mind for this years race: finish in the top 500 and break 90 minutes. Much to my surprise, because of the weather, I achieved both goals. I told myself this would be the last year I ran the Indy Mini if I achieved both goals. This was my 5th Mini, and you can only run the same course so many times but pay more money each year and receive the same amount of satisfaction. With my time and place from this year, though, I’m tempted to see if I can do any better. If this barefoot running pays off, I may improve. I’ll get to that later…

Graduations…

The same day as the Mini, my sister-in-law (I have 5 altogether) Jenn graduated from Anderson University. She finished in 4 years, which seems to be an ever-growing accomplishment these days. She also graduated Summa Cum Laude. This is impressive for anyone, but considering Jenn spent a good majority of her college weekends on the road with The Revolve Tour, it’s extremely impressive. Jenn’s moved on to greener pastures: Nashville, TN. We already miss her around these parts but we also know she’s following her heart and her dreams…hard to argue with that. I’d recommend following Jenn on Twitter for inspiring and uplifting quotes and thoughts. The following Saturday, May 15, my youngest sis-in-law, Mollie, graduated from Deer Creek High School in Edmond, OK. Without divulging too much, this graduation represented much more than just a graduation from High School. Mollie is one of the greatest people I know. I’m continually humbled by Mollie, proud of her, and thankful to call her a “sister” and friend.

Birthdays…

Let me just give you a run-down of the birthdays, between family and friends, that I have to keep track of in May: Jack (cousin-in-law), Aaron (friend), Campbell (Aaron’s new baby), Donnie (brother-in-law), Matt (friend), Cate (niece), Becca (friend), both of my grandfathers (on the same day), Keith (dad – day after grandfathers birthdays), Pete (friend), Pam (friend), Lenny (uncle), Kyle (friend), Marcia (grandmother), Romi (friend), Travis (friend), Anna (my wife) and yes, even my birthday. Shew…I may have even forgotten a few. As you can see, May is busy! Thank God for Facebook and their birthday reminders!

iPads…

My wife is an unapologetic “early adopter.” I wouldn’t go as far to say that she’s a card-carrying member of Best Buy’s Geek Squad, but she definitely loves new technology, especially when it comes to the goodies Apple delivers. With the help of some large investment firms, a.k.a. siblings, parents, and in-laws, we were able to present Anna with the esteemed title of “iPad Owner” for her birthday. Due to the large demand, I was not able to get my hands on one in time for her birthday. All I had to show was a document confirming that in 7-10 business days, she would be touring Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory..err…I mean owning and iPad. If you would have been listening just outside our house that Saturday morning, you would have thought I had just proposed. Now that I think about it, had I known 5 1/2 years ago that the iPads would be coming out, I would have just held out on the engagement ring…

Barefoot Running…

I recently began reading the book “Born To Run” by Christopher McDougall. I’m sorry if this is disappointing news, but this book is not an homage to The Boss. McDougall is an avid runner, one that’s injury-plagued, though, as he stands 6 foot 4 inches and weighs 230 lbs (at least he does at the beginning of the book). In an effort to contradict multiple physician’s recommendations of forfeiting running altogether, McDougall sets out on a journey to track down the Tarahumara tribe in the Copper Canyons of Mexico who are well-known for their ability to run, for miles and miles, without injury. The real kicker is that the Tarahumara people do not run in the latest Nike Pegasus, Mizuno Wave-Riders, Asics Gel-Kayanos, or any other type of technically sound running shoe. They wear minimal, homemade sandals.

Though I’ve not completed the book, the theme of “minimalism,” specifically as it relates to the running shoes most wear compared to the sandals worn by the Tarahumara, is one that is ever-present. McDougall’s argument is that as we’ve attempted to make running easier and more comfortable with new and improved running shoes year after year, we’ve actually created more injuries for ourselves. Running can have a nasty, painful impact on the body, especially the knees. Knee injuries can be a result of continuous impact and shock when your heel strikes the ground. When running barefoot, or in the case of the Tarahumara and their minimalistic sandals, you’re forced to run on the balls of your feet, lessening the impact on your knees and strengthening the stabilizing muscles in your feet and lower legs. Barefoot running also causes you to take smaller, quicker strides as you’re more careful and aware of each step. Juxtapose this to heavy, clunky steps you may be taking in normal shoes and you can obviously see the benefit.

I’ve incorporated barefoot running into three workouts now. I’ve ended my runs with somewhere between a .25 – .5 miles of barefoot running. I’ve read it’s best to ease into running barefoot as it is with any new type of workout; your body has to adjust and adapt since it’s recruiting new and/or unused muscles. I can’t confirm or deny that barefoot running is the best thing since sliced-bread. It hasn’t hurt me yet, though, and the belief/logic/science/craziness behind it seems to make sense. I’d like to try a pair of Vibram’s Five Fingers once I build up my “barefoot mileage.” The streets of Fishers are laden with broken bottles, razor blades, and other enemies of the foot. I’m not sure I’m as brave as Barefoot Ted or others who run marathons on more donning nothing but their own two Flintstone feet. Check Barefoot Ted out on Twitter here.

World Cup 2010…

Unless you’ve been in a hole for a few days now, you know the 2010 World Cup began this past Friday. The World Cup, held in South Africa this year, is in my opinion, the greatest sporting event…ever. Granted, I’m biased as football (soccer) is my favorite sport to watch. I would put the World Cup on par with the Olympics, but since I enjoy soccer much more than gymnastics and curling, it takes the cake.

It’s not just the entertainment and competitiveness of football that draws me in: it is in fact “the beautiful game.” If you’ve ever seen Lionel Messi split through all 11 members of the opposing team, or Cristiano Ronaldo deliver a free-kick resulting in a cross-eyed, dumbstruck goalkeeper, or Ronaldhino maneuver a ball like a yo-yo, then you know what I’m talking about. I’m also intrigued and inspired by the culture of football. It’s so much more than a sport to most around the world. It’s a part of their culture, their communities, their heritage, and yes even intertwined with their governments in some countries. You can argue whether this is good or bad, but how many accused steroid-using baseball players have we seen before the U.S. Congress? Yes, “hooliganism”exists, and harmful events have resulted due to passionate fans. I’m not condoning these actions or saying I understand them. What I appreciate, though, is that football, and the World Cup, is something the world can share and take part in. It’s unifying, and that’s refreshing to see in a world torn by political, religious, and economical differences. Joga bontioeven when you’re blindfolded.

Here’s a quick run-down of the 2010 WC matches thus far…

South Africa 1 − 1 Mexico: This was a toss-up. Going in to the match I thought Mexico was the better side, but South Africa had the momentum of home-field advantage, literally.

Uruguay 0 − 0 France: This was a surprise. Yes, Uruguay won the very first World Cup in 1930. Yes, Diego Forlan is a solid player. Seriously, though, France has a lot more “star” players and should have won the match.

South Korea 2 − 0 Greece: Greece, since winning the 2004 European Championship, has proved themselves worthy. The pace of South Korea is hard to compete with, though. This was a deserved “W” for SK.

Argentina 1 − 0 Nigeria: The only surprise here is that Argentina did not put a few more balls in the back of the net. With strikers like Messi, Tevez, and Higuain, don’t be surprised to see a workshop on scoring. It will be interesting to see how Diego Maradona bodes as the coach of the Argentines, though. He was a great player, but can he coach a team to a WC title? If you’re not familiar with his antics, he’s a combination of Mark Cuban, Super Mario (yes, from the video game), and Don Vito Corleone (because he’s always smoking cigars).

England 1 − 1 United States: Yes, Robert Green made a bonehead mistake and gifted a goal to the U.S. The fact that the Yanks were able to contain Wayne Rooney, arguably the best player in the tournament behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, is a huge success. Yes, it would have been great for the U.S. to defeat the Brits. A draw is a victory, and England should be thankful they didn’t lose. I’m sure the folks back home would have been pretty disappointed and the naysayers would have been a lot louder than any of those vuvuzelas. I’m guessing Beckham’s just glad it was Robert Green, and not he, bringing the disappointment this time around…

Algeria 0 − 1 Slovenia: I honestly know very little about either of these teams. I know A) they’re in the Group C with England and the U.S. and B) neither one of them should make it out of group play (only two teams make it out). However, the fact that Slovenia is now atop the group due to the England-U.S. draw makes it interesting for the other three teams.

Serbia 0 − 1 Ghana: I saw this victory coming until I realized Michael Essien was injured and not participating in the WC.

Germany 4 − 0 Australia: I saw this victory coming as well, though not to this extent. Germany’s captain, Michael Ballack is injured and not in the WC squad. They’re also fielding quite a few young players. Australia got off to a bad start before the tournament even began by losing 2-0 to the U.S. in a friendly/warm-up on June 5th. The loss of Tim Cahill in the next match due to an unnecessary red card is bound to have a negative impact as well. The Aussies showed-up and surprised everyone in 2006; I wouldn’t expect the same this time around.

*Netherlands 2 − 0 Denmark: This victory came as no surprise. I expected the Orange Army to walk away with a “W”. They didn’t even field one of their best players, Arjen Robben, as he’s nursing a hamstring injury. They should make it out of group play. As far as Denmark is concerned, though they’ve been credited as the “happiest country” or something along those lines, I don’t think they have much hope. Nicklas Bendtner is a good striker, but he’s only 20, and nursing an injury.

*How did the Netherlands get so lucky (click on “lucky,” it’s awesome) with all three names: Netherlands, Holland, and the Dutch? I’m jealous…

Japan 1 − 0 Cameroon: I was a bit surprised by this outcome. I expected Cameroon to at least put one goal in the net, especially with Samuel Eto’o in the lineup.

Italy takes-on Paraguay this afternoon. As the defending champs, Italy has a lot on their shoulders. I expect them to walk away with a victory, though.

That’s all for now, folks. I’ll do my best to update this more often. At the least, expect to see some more rantings relating to the World Cup. A friend of mine, Craig, who’s played soccer his whole life and is now making a career out of coaching and directing for a local youth soccer organization, has and had a supportive dad when it came to his soccer and other sport-playing days. At matches, his dad would bring a green flag with a soccer ball. I never understood the flag; it didn’t have anything to do with Craig, the team, the team colors, etc. I guess he was just a fan of the ball itself. For the next month, I’ll be waving a figurative green flag with a soccer ball on it. Yes, I’d love to see the U.S. do well. I just love the World Cup, though, no matter who’s playing.

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About Collin Trent

Faith.Family.Friends.Serve.Give.Love.Run.Live.
This entry was posted in I'm back..., Running..., Technology, World Cup 2010. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Races, Graduations, Birthdays, iPads, Barefoot Running, and the World Cup…

  1. Carrie says:

    Great read, bro! Although you may have forgotten the most important May b-day of all – your wife’s!! 🙂

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