McMullen tempo, speedwork, shoes

Started out the new running week (running weeks start in Saturday) with McMullen Creek from 51 all the way to Rea (including the steeplechase construction portion at Johnston). PM was up for a 6:30am start, which was a good thing since the lot was already starting to get busy. DJ showed up and seems ready to resume his Boston quest this year, and PM’s friend R joined us for the first time, and according to PM was there specifically to “kick my ass”; good thing I brought my heart rate monitor for the first time in over a year!

First six out were mild 8:15-ish miles, and I stuck a solid 120bpm all the way out. R and I took off on the way back, intending to run about a five-minute negative split, but we ended up running mid-to-low 6’s (I think) for 4.5 miles; all I’m sure of is that I was at 140bpm for the first two tempo miles, 150 for the third, and then popped 160 over the last mile. He seemed to have plenty of speed left, but I was pushing all out. Awesome getting to chase, which is exactly what I need to get some speed for the Fall. Nobody human runs 2:50 marathons at a 120 heart rate, after all.

Plus, R is on our Blue Ridge Relay team, which means I won’t be the fastest on the team. Sweet! I’ll still happily take spot 2, which is going to bring a new meaning to the name “Crazy Legs”.

In other running news, speedwork on the track has gone well for the past two weeks, though I might finally puke the next time we do 10x400m in 100F temp. Asics finally released the new rev for my favorite racing shoe, the Gel-Speedstar 3, and I have a pair on order. I’ve been doing my speedwork in some new two-models-old DS Trainers I pulled out of the closet and might try the new ones if I don’t love the Speedstar 3 like I did the 2.

Leica M8 review by a real photojournalist

Michael Kamber is a war photojournalist and Leica fan currently operating in Iraq, and in this article he discusses his real-world experiences with the Leica M8. The article is scathing, to put it bluntly. Most interesting to me were not the photographic problems with the camera (absolutely wild fluxuations in color balance, for example) but some very basic usability flaws that rendered the camera unusable for Kamber. In a statement that sounds so familiar to me, he questions whether Leica performed any real-world testing of the camera before shipping. And this guy’s not just being picky.

Originally linked from Luminous Landscape.