Monday, June 30, 2008

Old balls +1

That's right Johnny, you will be old balls + 1! I soon will be (gulp!?!) 23 years old! Still one month to go for me!

I thought I would just give everyone a quick update on my training, etc, here in AK. I have been working a week on week off schedule on the north slope of AK so to keep myself motivated while in the field I signed up for 2 half marathons this summer. The first was the Mayor's half marathon, here in Anchorage and it was June 21st. I trained for about 7 weeks for it and I am definitely thinking I could have used some more training! I did 2 weeks of 6-miles a day on a treadmill (time on slope), then did 2 weeks of "altitude" training at about 4 miles a day with the Bolder Boulder thrown in (my trip home to WY), then a week of 6-miles a day on the treadmill (slope), a week of hiking around AK (friends came to visit), then a few days of the 6-miles on the treadmill at various speeds, then it was time to "taper" for the race! I kept increasing my speed and incline on the treadmill with every subsequent workout so I would not hit a plateau. My goal time for the race was set at under 2 hours, I had run a half in January in 2:08, and one last April at 2:16.

So race day comes and it is a beautiful AK summer day...meaning rainy and about 50 degrees! It was all pavement but followed the coastal trail so the scenery was beautiful! I was shooting for 9 minute miles but started fast, my first mile was under 8 minutes, then every mile after that was 8 minutes give or take a few seconds, then I hit mile 10. From miles 4-10 I ran with a 54 year old woman whose goal was to beat her time of 1:53 from 9 years ago, she runs half marathons and marathon all the time, definitely one of those "old" people I want to be! We stuck together until mile 10, which we hit at exactly 1:20....then I started to fade a bit so she took off and I was on my own, at which point my legs decided that 6 miles on the treadmill didn't quite make them strong enough, I averaged just over 10 minute miles for the last 3 miles but was able to run up the last hill at the end. The result was I finished in 1:55, 5 minutes under my goal! I was pretty stoked!

My next race is the middle of August and I think I am going to shoot for 1:50, I am done working in the field so I can get much more pavement running in so hopefully that will help!

I hope everyone is doing well with their summer training! Tonight Katie, Liz, Russ, and Patrick and I are meeting for dinner! I can't wait!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Is it fall yet?!

So I'm sittig at home on my lunch break covered in dirt and concrete. I've been working ten hour days and they havent been very fun. On top of that i'm still trying to stick to my training the best as I can and also play drums in my band several times a week. I am ready for a vacation! I've also been noticing my brain going into knowladge withdrawls. So I actually started studying the other night. Who would've ever thought that I, John Kirlin, would be studying chemestry in the summer! I know i never saw this coming! Maybe I am just getting old. Friday is my 23rd birthday, so according to the Gangle, I'm old balls plus one. YIKES!

I'm ready for the fall semester to start. I'm excited that we are getting some new skiers, and am ready to start kicking ass again with our returning athletes!

Well its about time for me to head back to the concrete! hooray!

P.s. Fitz, way to get your ass moving on that run! Next time I'm in town, I'll run it with you

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

2 Hour Volume Run

My whole life Pilot Hill has been looming in the distance. From the days of my young athletic career I had the goal of running to the top. I finally achieved that goal on Sunday! The two hour Zone 1 run I had planned on Sunday was never meant to summit the “hill.” Setting out on 2 hour runs can be a daunting task for me so I figure the best way to ensure that I will run for two hours is to run for an hour from my house. When I hit an hour I’ll turn around and then I’ll be forced to run the two hours whether I want to or not. As it turns out, Laramie isn’t that large and when you run for an hour in one direction you’ll end up out of town and when I’m out of town I run on the dirt roads that litter the perimeter of the city. I hadn’t planned on running the hill climb but when I got to 50 minutes up a dirt road and I noticed how close I was the summit I knew I couldn’t stop so close to my goal. 35 minutes later I got to the top! It wasn’t as great as I had hoped, I just wanted water! Next time I’m going to take a page from coaches’ book and bring a water belt, even though I hate running with one. To add to the blistering heat when I turned around at the summit I saw a thunderstorm coming. Turns out I was the tallest thing within miles and I was six plus miles from home! I won’t say that the return run was anywhere close to Zone 1 but I made it home safe and accomplished one of my life goals. In the end I found my new favorite Sunday Volume run. I’m not sure how long it is from my house, but I used Google Earth and figured out it’s a change of close to 3000 feet in elevation. It’s a great run! If anyone wants to go and you are in town let me know! I hope everyone’s summer training is going well, I know mine is!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Summer Ski Camp...

Well it's been a couple of weeks since the end of the High School Summer Ski Camp and no one has written about it!

I chalk this up to being busy or having too much fun, this has been my reasons for not posting.

So here it goes...

Day 1: We (Rachel, Christi, Team Leaders and Ev & Dick) all arrive at the camp about 1pm on Saturday to get setup and ready to go. The team leaders for the camp are Joe, John, Justin, Erin J, Gracey and Topher. Topher isn't here yet, I think we forgot to tell him to be early and Justin decided to go hunting with his car and hit a deer on the way down. He won't join us until Sunday.

Quick meeting and moving into cabins and the athletes start arriving.

This is a fun part as the athletes arrive and we get to meet everyone or see familiar faces again.

This year we have a special treat and the Yoga instructor from UW Campus Rec has agreed to come out to the camp and do a Yoga session for the early arrivals. We have most of the athetes there, just a few running a little late, so she holds an hour session on the grass in front of the lodge. Very cool, Yoga builds flexibility, strength, concentraion and body control all of which are essential for skiing fast! It is also a wonderful activity to help with relaxation, which the coaches and most of the college athletes can really use!

After a wonderful dinner of mexican food we have the Welcome and the explanations of how the camp will work. Everyone is excited and looking forward to skiing in the morning. The only problem is that it started to rain about 5pm and now it's snowing. We're not sure about the crust in the morning, afraid it won't be hard enough to ski on.

Day 2: Sunday dawns gloomy and cold and we're still a little worried about the crust. We arrive and the crust is not our problem, it's strong and hard but there is 6 inches of new snow on top of the crust! Wow! Exciting for those of us that can't get enough snow but really tough to skate in. We basically just trudged around through the deep snow, it was like a winter wonderland!

Back down for a fantastic breakfast, rest, lectures/meetings, lunch, rest, then out for our distance run. It had turned into a beautiful day for running, not too hot. We started as one group and gradually split everyone up into smaller ones, according to their heart rate. It was a wonderful run!

We came back to the camp and did a strength circuit on the grass. Great fun despite some confusion about which station was next.

After another amazing dinner, spagetti this time, we had a special treat of having Sarah Konrad come out and give a talk and answer questions. Sarah is the only American woman to qualify for two events in the same Olympics, Cross-Country and Biathlon. She's a great person and is always a treat for the athletes to talk to and ask questions of. We're lucky because Sarah lives and works in Laramie at UW!

After the lecture is free time and individual meetings with the college coaches for those athletes who wish to ask specific questions, want individual training or just want to talk about anything!

Day 3: Bright and beautiful. The skiing this morning was AMAZING, as good or better than we've ever seen it! Hard, fast crust, tons of snow so miles of skiing and a nice temperature. It can't be beat!

Back for Breakfast, meetings, rest, meetings, lunch, rest, meetings and finally we're ready for the really tough workout, hill bounding! We always do our hill bounding at the base of Snowy Range Ski Area. It's a great place with a steep hill and it's deserted at this time of year. As a testament to the massive amount of snow we had the place we usually do bounds still had some snow so we moved over to another run. It was beautiful, not too hot and a hard workout. The skiing for the past 2 days was so hard that many of the athletes were starting to get really tired but on the whole it went' extremely well.

Back for dinner and a rest and then we had Don Quinn for our evening lecture. Don was the high school coach for Lake Country High School, in Leadville, Co for over 30 years. During this time he had upward of 30 High School champions and a bunch of National Champions. All from a small town in the Colorado Mountains! Don gave a great lecture about skiing and life.

The day ended with free time, more individual coaching meetings and blowball!

Day 4: Another amazing day of crust skiing. So much fun that it seems like a dream. We did a little technique work with those who were interested and the rest had their last fun day on snow for the summer.

Breakfast and then one of the best activities of the camp, the teams course. This year it had a theme, map and a storyline. There were no instructions given verbally just maps handed to each group and they were off. It was great fun and everyone had a great time.

At the conclusion of the teams course is lunch and camp clean-up. Most everyone is sorry to go. They made great friends, skied, ate amazing food and hopefully learned something about how to train for skiing.

Pictures from the camp can be found at

We had a great time and hope to see you all at camp next year!

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I have been in Idaho for about 2 weeks now. The bike path is long and has some very pretty parts to it. So far the weather has been rainy and cool which I like because I am not ready for 100 degree weather. It is supposed to be 85 this weekend so it is coming :( I joined a gym so I can keep up my swimming and lifting so I can get everything back that I lost from surgery. Everything is going great; I have done activities from camping to checking out the night life in downtown Boise. It's great. The best part is I get to see Ashley!!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008


well, i've been home for almost a month now, and it has been nice. i got a new road bike and have been riding that and gotten into some running. so far i have been trying to follow the plan and i think this will show some improvement , im hoping...but now i,ve started work and have still been able to do some training after that so everything is going good. except the bird eating mosquitos!