Category Archives: PTP Outdoor Adventures

Maria’s Alcatraz Swim, September 2011

Me and Jim, ready to swim. My daughter Nina and husband Andy are behind us.

A few years ago my brother Jim convinced me to sign up for the Alcatraz Invitational Swim. A swim event (it may be a race for some but not for me) which consists of taking a ferry to just off The Rock, jumping off, and swimming as fast as you can back to Aquatic Park. Lest you think my brother was hoping to increase the size of his inheritance, he was actually looking for company. Jim had done the event a couple times with our niece Nina and assured me it was good fun. Continue reading Maria’s Alcatraz Swim, September 2011

Jim’s Alcatraz Swim, September 2011

This was my final event of the year, The Alcatraz Invitational Swim from Alcatraz to Aquatic Park. It’s about 1.25 miles if you swim straight. In the past I haven’t been so lucky, either because of the currents, the fog, my crappy swim technique, or all of the above. This time conditions were ideal: beautiful day, minimal current, slightly improved swim technique. I was hoping to improve on my time of 1:01:57 from last year. I again had the company of my sister, Maria, and my niece, Nina, as well as quite a few friends at San Jose Swim & Racquet Club in my Willow Glen neighborhood. And this time I stopped to take plenty of photos, using a $20 disposable waterproof camera. Continue reading Jim’s Alcatraz Swim, September 2011

Ironman Canada, August 2011

This is the third of my four events this year. I was exhilarated after completing the Boston Marathon and the California Death Ride. I felt comfortable that my training would get me through the event: My speed work was done while training for the Boston Marathon and my endurance training was done while training for the Death Ride. And most important, I’d gotten through all my training without injury. But I must admit that I was feeling the fatigue from training that had started before Christmas last year. When it came time to tapering for this race, I had no problem taking it easy. I was glad to have the training behind me and looking forward to the reward of racing.

 

Continue reading Ironman Canada, August 2011

Biking to Lunch in Mountain View from Willow Glen, July 2011

Cool pedestrian bridge on Stevens Creek Train

I’m very excited that the Bay Area trails are starting to create pathways to fun places all around the bay, without having to leave protected bike trails. In July I rode from my house in the Willow Glen neighborhood of San Jose to have lunch in Mountain View, taking the Guadalupe River Trail to the San Francisco Bay Trail to Stevens Creek Trail. I only had to use surface streets three times, all for very short distances with little traffic. Continue reading Biking to Lunch in Mountain View from Willow Glen, July 2011

Death Ride, July 2011

Jim signing the board at the top of Carson Pass.

So I completed the second of my 4 events for the year – the California “Death Ride“, so named because it covers 129 miles over 5 mountain passes, totaling 15000 feet of climbing, all at high elevation! It is not a race: there were no timing mats to cross, no split times. In fact, there were numerous rest stations where the riders took the time to get off their bikes to rest and eat and chat with other riders. But with all those miles and all those climbs, finishing before the cut-off would be my challenge. Continue reading Death Ride, July 2011

Hunter-Liggett Under Blue, Blue Skies

Abandoned tank at Fort Hunter Liggett

I had a great bike ride on Friday, June 10, from Mission San Antonio to Highway 1 and back, through Fort Hunter Liggett. I’m training for the Death Ride on July 9, so I needed to get in some long hilly rides. I was on my way to my folks house in San Luis Obispo – recently rated one the happiest places on earth! – so I stopped at Hunter Liggett. Because it’s an army base, you can’t park just anywhere. Mission San Antonio, however, is just across the road. Continue reading Hunter-Liggett Under Blue, Blue Skies

Boston Marathon, 2011

With my finisher’s medal at the end of the race

Prelude to the Race

This was a race I planned long in advance, because I would be entering a new age group. I have great ambitions for this year, not just for the Boston Marathon, but also for the Death Ride, Ironman Canada, and the Alcatraz Invitational Swim. The Boston Marathon required a qualifying time, which I took care of by running a 3:40:04 marathon at Napa in March 2010, where I came in 5th of 79 in my age group (read my blog about it). At the time, I was excited with the results, but that quickly passed when I recalled how humbling it is to run Boston, where the winner in my age group probably would be done with breakfast by the time I finished. Continue reading Boston Marathon, 2011

$10M Views Bicycling from Oakland to Richmond

I had fantastic views of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge all day.

My previous trip along the San Francisco Bay Trail ended with a walk up Hegenberger Road with a flat tire to get to the Oakland Coliseum BART. This time, I rode down Hegenberger with a new steel-belted front tire watching out for broken glass and other sharp objects. Between Oakland and Richmond the path is mostly paved and car-free, offering $10 million views of the bay, San Francisco, the Berkeley hills, and eastern Marin. Continue reading $10M Views Bicycling from Oakland to Richmond

Going Further, Faster at 60

At the finish of the Coeur d’Alene Ironman Triathlon 2010

This is a big year for me. I’ve turned 60 years old and I feel great! I’ve got much to look forward to, and much to look back on. Specifically, I’m looking forward to placing high in my new age group in the Boston Marathon in April, the Tour of California Alps Death Ride in July, the Ironman Canada triathlon in August, and the Alcatraz Invitational swim in September. Wow! What a way to celebrate being alive! Continue reading Going Further, Faster at 60

My “Secret” Granola Recipe

I am now 9 weeks into my training for this year’s Boston Marathon. It’s the first of the 4 events I’ve signed up for this year. But more on that later. I just wanted to make this a short blog of one of the secret ingredients of my training. It’s my homemade granola. It’s a variation on the original recipe I was given when I was living in New Zealand in 1978. (Yes, that’s a lot of granola behind me.) I eat it nearly every morning during training and before an event. It’s good fuel and easy to digest. I can make a big batch that lasts me about 3 weeks. This saves me a lot of time, and I really like it. It seems to be popular, so I thought I’d share the recipe. Here it is: Continue reading My “Secret” Granola Recipe