Fun weekend in the Shutt household. Saturday we went down to the best bike shop in the world (Big Bang Bikes) and Beth got new cleats and a new trainer. This results in me getting her old trainer, meaning I now don't have an excuse to not ride the bike from October to May. This may or may not be a good thing...
This then led us over to Hoss's--my favorite cornucopia of eating out! Although, I did have to exercise some restraint since I was racing this morning. This was in the form of only getting one round of ice cream (with brownies and cookies mixed in) and only getting a small helping of peach pie without ice cream....all of this after a steak sandwich, french fries, salad, bread, jello,...but not quite as much as my Hoss's trip last summer up in Erie.
The reason we went over to Murrysville instead of closer to home for dinner was because we were going over to our church home away from home for the Saturday night service at Cornerstone Ministries in Export. We discovered this awesome upbeat service last winter and always make a point of going there when we have something going on Sunday (aka--usually a race). The topic was a very thought-provoking one--abortion. There was a guest speaker, Michael Clancy, who worked for the USA Today as a photographer and shot a photo of the youngest human ever--21 weeks after conception. The picture is a little graphic, so I'll let you choose if you want to go the site linked to his name and check it out. It was very moving.
Being raised in the church, I've always believed that abortion was wrong, but always had in the back of my head that I'm not a female and I don't know what it would be like to be in a bad situation (the baby may be sick, pregnant from a rape, etc). But, this was pretty moving evidence that the baby is functioning already 5 months into the pregnancy. Wow.
FRIGID FIVE MILER
Okay, on to lighter topics, like the FREEZING TEMPERATURES for the race this morning. The alarm went off at 6am. I turned on the weather channel and it said ZERO DEGREES. Fortunately, there wasn't any wind, or else it could have been REALLY nasty. So, we go over to the race, do our warmup (my beard was full of icicles), stretch and strider, and get ready for the race. In addition to Beth, Chad, Ben, and Doug did the race, too.
My only thought going in to the race, was to not have a repeat performance of my last race (the Philly Marathon) where (A) I went out too hard and (B) My hamstrings tied up like pretzels. Although it was cold, I felt good with my layers and figured I'd see what I could do.
Mile 1 and 2 are rolling, but with a net downhill of 300 or so feet (which comes back later). Mile 3 has a little up and down, and is then flat. Mile 4 has more up than down and mile 5 ends with 3/4 of a mile where you go back up the 300 feet. Last year my splits were 6:24, 6:06, 6:12, 6:40, and 7:14!!! It's a big hill.
So, I went out in 5:52 with Chad and we were in 7-10th-ish position. I was a little worried about the pace, but just tried to relax and hang in the back of our mini pack. Mile 2 cruised in at 5:30 according to Chad (I missed the sign for the mile 2 split). Using that calculation, mile 3 was 5:46 and we were now 7th and 8th with me still lingering on the back of our group of four. Mile 4 was 6:12 and then we went up the hill in mile 5. I put it in a low gear and was able to pick off a guy on the hill and ended up 6th. It was pretty exciting. Chad came it just behind me. Beth was the 1st female, and Ben and Doug got 3rd place in their respective age groups. Good day all around. But, the best part was the pancakes afterwards!!!!
College Hoops Fandom Application
Finally, the nominations are flying in and I still need help deciding. Just to remind everyone that this is just a one year commitment as I fully expect the young rosters of Arizona, Penn State, and Davidson to be back in the running next year. Also, if one of my teams does end up in the running for a tourney slot, I'll probably be pulling for my team to get an at-large over yours. By the way, Arizona DID beat #22 Washington today.
The nominees so far and my thoughts:
1. Cornell - Gave Kansas a run this past week, smart kids, a good shot in the Ivy League
2. DePaul - Don't know much about them, but they're in the Big East and a lot of good teams are ahead of them there.
3. Purdue - Top in the Big Ten(+1), but I don't know if I can root for a team I've always referred to as Pur-don't
4. Duke - I've always respected Coach K, Beth's sister lives there, I know Maija and Ben went there, maybe...
5. Oregon - Don't know if I can root for another Pac 10 school after all these years with Arizona.
6. Tennesse - Big win against Kansas today. An SEC school, so it wouldn't interfere with any of my other affiliations. Bruce Pearl seems like a neat personality. But they do have some off-the-court issues. Hmmmmm....
Still accepting additional applications/nominations for new teams or critiques/justifications for presently nominated teams. Deadline is January 17 11:59 pm EST.