Friday, July 17, 2009

3 A.G.

The title is not referring to 3rd place, age group. Rather, It’s referring to my new unit of yearly time measurement. In December 2006, Mrs. Nitmos gave me a Garmin 205. The modern running world began for me on that day. We are in the 3rd year of my Garmin based running life. Three years After Garmin – A.G.

I was going through my office desk the other day and ran across some old hand scribbled notes documenting past runs from my early running days sometime circa 2000-2001 (roughly 5 B.G.). It might as well have been cave hieroglyphics. What are all those crooked letters and numbers?

It took me awhile but I was finally able to decipher the runskrit language. Apparently, B.G., I used to keep track of distance and time by using ancient customs such as “memory” and “pencil and paper.” Weird, I know. Boy was I a backwards ass hick back then. You’d think I was from Ohio or something. I remember driving my running route with my car to get an idea on the distance based on the odometer – WHICH ONLY WENT TO THE 1/10 MILE decimal position. What a neanderthal! The really hilarious part is that I also remember being perfectly content with this at the time. After all, what’s the difference between 3.05 miles and 3.12 miles I thought then? (Answer: A PR and SOS2 achieving result. Duh.)

In order to keep track of events that occurred during my run, I’d bring chalk and draw a stick figure running person (with overly developed pecs and a pleasantly toned set of glutes, of course) on the sidewalk. If a dog attacked, I’d say “ooh oohh ahh ahh, hold my mirror” and then draw a picture of the running man being chased by a large fanged animal. This is how I recorded my running history. This is when I wore a Timex sports watch. (i.e. loin cloth)

I’ve evolved quite a bit since then. I don’t “write” down training runs anymore. Writing is for sloped forehead B.G.ers. I track my distance to the hundredth of a mile like a civilized person ensuring that I know exactly how close or how far I’m away from that PR. I’m no longer concerned with hunting and gathering my training runs. Data management and uploading results is more my game.

I stashed my relic running notes away for future marathoners to study. I’m sure they, with their permanently implanted chip constantly uploading data to a central running data computer, will find that and my bulky wrist Garmin, with manual Start-Stop, fairly primitive one day.

As much as I enjoy my Garmin and the steady stream of data it provides, I have caught myself dreaming of what it would be like to time myself in, say, thousandths, or even hundred-thousandths, of a mile. Sure, my last run finished in 5.25 miles. But was that really 5.2532 or 5.2537? And how does that impact my pace per mile? Who knows?

By 10 A.G., I may not need to push a single button. By 12 A.G., I may be able to track to the millionths of a second for each foot fall. Eventually, I may need to switch to a new unit of time: A.I. (After Implant.)

Those are developments for future generations of runners. For now, things look pretty good here in 3 A.G. At least, I don’t know what I missing. Yet.

Happy trails.
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If you aren’t reading Tall Girl Running, you should. The posts, while not as frequent as my crap, are always well written and pretty funny. Go there now. You’re welcome.

I actually met another run blogger last night. As it turns out, Running Spike basically shares a neighborhood with me. I was walking my dog just as he was running by. We exchanged greetings. I destroyed the momentum of his tempo run. It’s nice to know that at least one of you readers don’t appear to be someone who would boil my pets in water. Although, I have to admit, I was a bit disconcerted when he asked my dog’s name. And how she tastes with gravy.

23 comments:

Sun Runner said...

So...some people you deign to speak to? I just merit a point of the finger? Fine, I see how it is. Be that way. See if I ever point back the next time we cross paths at a race. ;)

Personally I'm surprised Spike actually stopped running to talk. The man's obsessed, I tell you. I think he already records his runs to the thousandth of a second.

Arron said...

there was time prior to AG. odd, i dont remember it....

Xenia said...

Because I'm me, I have to correct you. Since A.D. means "anno domini" ('in the year of our lord' in latin) and not 'after death' then A.G. should stand for anno Garmini. Gives it a touch more sophistication, I think.

Viper said...

Xenia makes the mistake that Nitmos is even halfway sophisticated. Halfwit is more like it.

I read the first paragraph and skipped to the end, as I am an anachronism in the Garmin Era, running with a watch.

I hope to meet you someday. So I can introduce my foot to your groin. Cheers!

BrianFlash said...

No one else can make a post about tracking their training with a GPS watch as entertaining as this...

Morgan said...

I do not own a Garmin. *GASP* I do however use a Nike+ not that I think that puts me at any kind of higher level of sophistication than your B.G. Seriously, the damn thing never stays calibrated so basically I used it like a stop watch. *Hangs head in shame* Does this make me less of a runner?

Great post as always! You are wildly entertaining. (And devilishly handsome as you so humbly point out on a regular basis....)

When I come home (to Michigan) after Chicago in October I have got to get up to ya'll's neighborhood and run... even if I'd be eating your dust.

Jess said...

Haha I'm glad Garmin's been good to you. I'm still operating in Before Garmin time.

Vanilla said...

It's too bad that Spike didn't remember you making fun of him on a recent podcast and sucker-punch you. I'll have to go remind him.

Irene said...

I'm still trying to bring my husband into the now. He still uses sticks and rocks to figure out his stats...

RunToFinish said...

wow now I feel like a real dolt...even with Garmie I still run to rounded numbers...cause my little brain likes it

Julia said...

Hi, I'm new to your blog. I really liked this post! Up until 3 days ago, I was hunting and gathering my training runs; so primitive! haha. Now I am a proud owner of a Garmin, and I can't wait to run with the rest of civilization :)

Beth said...

My computer hard drive got eaten last fall and I lost all of my Garmin history that wasn't on my watch. I cried. Now it's backed up on an external drive. Now, if they could only make it a little smarter so that it didn't look like a Casio calculator on my wrist...

Marlene said...

I think I may be too young to remember "memory" and "pencils".

Rural Runner E said...

I must still be an neanderthal (sp?)....I still use computer mapping and a nike wristwatch to chart my runs....maybe someday I will get my Garmin.

KimsRunning said...

I agree with RunToFinish...I always end on a round number. But allmy brains are big. Really big.

Spike said...

in my defense, you did respond with "delicious, as least her sisters and brothers were." I was glad to finally say hello seeing how we I basically camp, I mean live, in your backyard.

and you by no means destroyed my tempo run, you gave me a few minutes rest to really smash that last mile; which got me wondering if there is some legal way to stop the official clock and give the runners a rest during a race.

X-Country2 said...

Get the Garmin 405. It senses when yo uhave to go to the bathroom and recalcuates to send you to a hidden tree.

Irish Cream said...

I don't think I can even remember what life was like B.G. Perhaps it was simply too painful and I've blocked it? Math tends to do that to me . . .

Vava said...

Nice! My life changed once I bought a Garmin, almost exactly a year ago I think. We have a generally good relationship, though sometimes I am skeptical about it's accuracy. Do Garmin have "those monthly" things that may affect their attitudes? Hmmm.

What's "paper"?

sRod said...

I'm still in year one AG. I didn't think I'd welcome the change, but it was totally worth it. I never have to map out another run again!

aron said...

omgosh life before garmin?? dont even want to think about it ;-)

Adam said...

My wife always says that I act like a caveman. Maybe I need to upgrade my Garmin from the 305 to the 405? Seems like the only logical thing to do.

Danielle in Iowa said...

I have a Garmin 101. A 101! It has a hand crank to power it up.

I'm pretty sure it just makes up every number past the first one, yet I still run around the block an extra time to get to exactly 3.0 miles.