Old guys rule!

Check out this guy. 95 years old and running marathons. I want to be him in 50 years. But I might have to trade wine and beer for ginger curry. I’m hoping the turban is optional.

Someone should tell him about this site. Too bad they don’t sell tech tees.

Westchesterites: Downloadable library audiobooks are coming

Like lots of runners, I have an MP3 player. Believe it or not, it’s not an iPod. I’m a fairly loyal Mac user, but the cost of an iPod is daylight robbery! Besides, I wanted something with an FM radio and a decent belt clip.

I have a Creative Labs Muvo TxFM and I like it very much (although I often wish I’d sprung for the 1GB model instead of 512MB). I also tricked it out with a pair of noise-canceling headphones from Shure (but I don’t wear them outside because they really do block out all sound…very dangerous). These are perfect for hiding the sound of my treadmill, so I can actually hear what I’m listening too. Also good for blocking out the white noise on commercial airliners.

Anyway, while perusing the Westchester Library System’s web site today, I discovered a pilot program for downloading audiobooks from the library. This is exciting stuff! So far, I’ve been using interlibrary lending to get my books on CD, then a laboriously ripping them in iTunes into MP3 format in order to get them onto my player. With this program, life (or at least this aspect of it) promises to get much easier.

My favorite recent audiobook “read” was Stiff by Mary Roach.

How to guarantee a race award

I ran in the Bronxville 5 Mile race this morning…and won my first award! First place for gender/age group, which netted me a hideous plastic trophy.

In the few races I’ve run, where I’ve placed in my gender/age group has depended on the size of the race and the quality of the competition. I’ve come in anywhere from the top 40% (big half marathon) to the top 10% (little 5K). My times are improving, but I’m not exactly straining the mantlepiece with the weight of awards.

Well, today I am a champion. My secret? Run in a race that almost no one runs in and that is scheduled on a major holiday weekend when most people are out of town. It’s that easy! 95% of the people doing the “fun run” were just running the 2.5 mile race. I’m not even sure how many of us ran the full 5 miles, but it did seem like the award:runner ratio was very high.

My time sucked, admittedly. I won’t even post it here. That was owing to the fact that it’s warm, extremely humid and the race is very hilly.

It will be interesting to see how my time compares in this race next year. I was the second or third woman to come in (not sure), so maybe I’ll make it my goal to be the first one in 2007.

Now it’s time for pizza and beer. Yay!

Postscript: It turns out that when I ran the course earlier in the week, I ran it backwards, which was a lot hillier. Going in the opposite direction front-loaded some of the most brutal hills and gave the most of the last mile or so a slight downgrade. I flew down that on the second lap, although some guy I’d passed earlier managed to pass me 20 yards from the finish line. I hate that!

Tips for beginner racers: Bib location

If you’re wearing a timing chip on your shoe, your can put your race number (aka “bib”) anywhere on your body that you like. But if you’re not wearing a chip, the bib goes on the front of your body. This is because the nice people at the finish line need to know who you are when you cross it so they can record your time correctly. Most people pin the bib to their shirt, but you can also pin it to your shorts.

If anyone can tell me where the runners pin their bibs for a nudist race, I’d love to know.