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Category Archive for ‘Uncategorized’

Running is my Drug of Choice

2012 in Review

Dear Nike,

Thank you for sending me a pair of FlyKnit running shoes this fall, I absolutely loved training with them. The colors are absolutely fabulous as well. I rock the shoes every time I wear them.

#First2Fly with Nike FlyKnit

With your gear and training support from Goals Fitness and Team Philly; I completed 4 half marathons, 1 Sprint Triathlon and the Philadelphia Marathon in 2012.   Working full time and training for these events took careful time management planning and a bucket load of desire to make this happen.  I’m not an elite athlete, yet I set improvement goals with each workout. That is the beauty of sport; there is an unending potential to become better than you were the day before.  Who wouldn’t want that?

All of what I have accomplished and what I will accomplish in the years to come will be through hard work and  proper training – no performance enhancers needed.  

I look forward to training with Nike gear and setting new records in my half marathon and marathon runs this year.  Now off to bed as I have an early morning fitness bootcamp class.

Happy Running!






2012 Chicago Marathon

Lovely Group Shot of Team Philly

It is an exciting Sunday! Two running friends are at the moment participating in the 2012 Chicago Marathon.

Go Shanae!  Go Azadeh!  Rock this marathon :)

A good blogging friend, John Ruberry, has run the Chicago marathon from 1990 through 2012 and is a Boston Marathon finisher. He writes extensively on his blog about his experiences running the Chicago marathon.  He was one of the first people I reached out to for running advice when I started training for the 2009 Alex Lemonade Stand Fund Lemon Run 5K.

Congratulations to Shanae, Azadeh and all the runners participating in the 2012 Chicago Marathon!


 ”We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves. The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, ‘You must not run faster than this, or jump higher than that.’ The human spirit is indomitable.”

Sir Roger Bannister, first man to break the four minute mile.


PS: Don’t forget to check out the race recaps of the 2012 Royal Parks Half Marathon that went off spectacularly in London today.


Triathlon Training – Open Water Swim Clinic

Morning swim in Schuykill River - I survived.

This was my make or break clinic to decide if I really was going to go through with this triathlon. It has been a while since I have been in open water and I wanted to know if I could handle the conditions and the distance.

Honestly, I was facing a whole bucket-load of fears as I looked out over the calm Schuylkill River early Sunday morning at the Philadelphia Swim Club. The water looked as dark as my thoughts. Again I was questioning what I had gotten myself into, is this just too much of an athletic overreach as I train for the Philadelphia Marathon?

This open water clinic organized by the SheRox mentor program is designed to give participants a taste of the swimming conditions prior to the race. As I stood by chatting with new friends, I found most shared similar concerns about the swimming portion of the triathlon.

Participants were grouped by color swim caps and numbers. I was number 14 in the Yellow group, the first group to head off into the cool water. Great,  I thought, early in, early out.  We jumped in to tread water for two minutes before given the start signal.  The course was lined with lifeguards and mentors in kayaks to assist if needed. Two buoys designed to look like Elmo were placed a 200 meters?  apart. Our instructions were simple: Swim out, round the first buoy, swim to the second buoy, round it, then swim back to the starting area.

And..I totally sucked.  I was trampled by the swimmers at the start then could not catch my breath the entire distance. I had trouble keeping my head down while I stroked and found myself frequently flipping over to regroup. This was nothing like pool swimming and my experience in open water came from SCUBA diving.

The good news is now I know what bugs me about the open water swim and that I can make adjustments in water to keep myself going forward.  Not for one nanosecond did I panic, just was annoyed that I couldn’t get my stroke pattern down and catch my breath. It was not a pretty swim but I discovered I have what it takes to complete the swim portion of this event.

This was a definitely a ‘make’ event and I will go forward to complete my first sprint Triathlon.


Will Microsoft Surface Complete Me?

Previously seen on PJ Media Lifestyle

Microsoft Surface – circa 2008 – minus the creepy looking guy:

Source: flickr.com via Tania on Pinterest


Last monday night Microsoft unveiled an updated version of Surface – Windows 8 and Windows RT tablets. On the surface (pardon the pun) it looks promising. I’ve hesitated to jump on the iPad bandwagon because I want a tablet that can replace my laptop – in my view the iPad is simply a larger version of the iPod Touch. I’ve held close to the vision of a mobile tablet that is powerful enough to allow me to create content, while catching a movie on Netflix,  or downloading interesting apps.

Below is Microsoft’s Surface keynote address by Steve Ballmer. The video runs about 45 minutes but well worth the time to get an idea of the capabilities of this new tablet.

Interesting to note that pricing and a date when the product goes on sale were not mentioned. While this keynote is a sexy advertisement for the Surface tablet, I will be keeping a close eye on new details of this tablet as they emerge.

Will the new Microsoft tablet complete my vision?  Time will tell and if it does, you will be reading my hands-on review here.


Quitter – A Book Review

First Line of Jon Acuff's Book 'Quitter'

Rarely does a book grab me with the first sentence, but that is exactly what happened when I began reading Jon Acuff’s book ‘Quitter‘.

The opening paragraph describes his reverse superman routine – something I practice three times a week. Although I do have access to a private bathroom, his advice for changing clothes is spot on along with his advice on making your dream job a reality.

Quitter is a personal reflection and how to guide on how to make dreams become your day job. Amazon book description is as follows:

Have you ever felt caught between the tension of a day job and a dream job? That gap between what you have to do and what you’d love to do?
I have.

At first I thought I was the only one who felt that way, but then I started to talk to people and realized we’re becoming the I’m, but generation. When we talk about what we do for a living we inevitably say, I’m a teacher, but I want to be an artist. I’m a CPA, but I’d love to start my own business.

I’m a _____, but I want to be a ______.

All too often, we hear that dreaming big means you quit your day job, sell everything you own, and move to Guam. But what if there were a different way?

What if you could blow up your dream without blowing up your life?

What if you could go for broke without going broke?

What if you could start today?

What if you already have everything you need to begin?

From figuring out what your dream is to quitting in a way that exponentially increases your chance of success, Quitter is full of inspiring stories and actionable advice. This book is based on 12 years of cubicle living and my true story of cultivating a dream job that changed my life and the world in the process.

It’s time to close the gap between your day job and your dream job.

It’s time to be a Quitter.

Jon delivers on the back of the book description. His writing paints a realistic portrait of how to make smart decisions on the path to your dream job and more importantly, why these decisions are important.  From the first sentence, I connected with the point of view of the author.  It took only two days to read the book, yet several weeks later I’m flipping through the book re-reading selected sections. I love, love, love his conversational style of writing.  Every time I read chapters or paragraphs, I come away with the impression of a best friend sharing serious, no nonsense advice – it is always best to pay attention.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is on a journey seeking to be better. It is a great tool to have and to use during your journey.


I was fortunate to be present during his opening keynote speech at the 2012 Blissdom conference in Nashville where he gave out a copy of his book, Quitter, my opinion of this book is completely my own.


Occupy Philly Racks Up $1 Million Dollar Debt – Hands It Off to Philly Taxpayers

Philly Sign

Occupy Philly supposedly scrawled a message somewhere in Dilworth Plaza regarding  the evils of corporate greed.

Philadelphia city officials recently disclosed the cost of maintaining the unwanted, overextended group tantrum calling itself “Occupy Philly’.  City officials estimated the protest cost the city more than $1 million, most of that in police overtime.

ONE. MILLION. DOLLARS.  That amount of money might buy you a seat at an Obama fundraiser in Philly.

That is a significant amount of money for a cash strapped city to have to squeeze into an already overburdened budget.  To make up for this budget busting expense, hard working residents of Philadelphia may have to adjust to city services reductions such as rolling brownouts of Philadelphia fire departments or library closures – thanks to the childish antics of Occupy Philly.

Supporters of the Philly Occupation are quick to hold the “1%” or Wall Street accountable for alleged fiscal improprieties; while the same supporters ignore their responsibility in creating a million dollar quagmire for hard working citizens of Philadelphia.

Lets get real for a moment – the Occupy movement is a complete disaster. As it stands now, the movement has no legitimacy outside its own echo chamber. Indeed the whole world watched, via New Media, as the occupy movement imploded on itself.  This public tantrum has cost cities across the nation an estimated 24.8 million dollars.

The sad truth is the city will never recoup the 1 million + from the protesters. However, there maybe a way for supporters of Occupy Philly to redeem themselves and perhaps gain some marketable skills at the same time. I propose the the leaders of Occupy Philly meet with Mayor Nutter to discuss ways to work off the debt through volunteer work.  The time spent on projects around the city could be used to pay down the million dollar debt owed to the citizens of Philadelphia and make the protesters appear less like greedy children and more like responsible, civic minded adults.

Personally, I would not object to them organizing fund raising event to support Philadelphia’s Fallen Finest - but that might be asking too much from such a small group of protesters.


Thanksgiving 2011

From my family to yours – Happy Thanksgiving!


Vote For the Funniest Occupation Video

While you are getting ready for Halloween and All Souls Day, take some time to laugh (or cry) over the three videos I’ve selected from the numerous Occupation videos.  Let me know by your comment which of the three you believe is the funniest of the lot.



Amazon Ignites Kindle Fire

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, an evil capitalist, introduced the new range of Kindle e-readers at a recent Amazon press event in NYC. The new Kindle Touch debuts at $146 with 3G and $99 without 3G. The e-ink, non touch screen Kindle will now sell for $79. Jeff used his press event to showcase Amazon’s step into the tablet market via Kindle Fire.

Kindle Fire’s important specs as per Amazon:

  • 7″ multi-touch display with IPS (in-plane switching) technology and anti-reflective treatment, 1024 x 600 pixel resolution at 169 ppi, 16 million colors.
  • 14.6 ounces (413 grams).
  • 8GB internal. That’s enough for 80 apps, plus either 10 movies or 800 songs or 6,000 books.
  • Free cloud storage for all Amazon content.
  • Up to 8 hours of continuous reading or 7.5 hours of video playback, with wireless off. Battery life will vary based on wireless usage, such as web browsing and downloading content.
  • Supports public and private Wi-Fi networks or hotspots that use the 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, or 802.1X standard with support for WEP, WPA and WPA2 security using password authentication; does not support connecting to ad-hoc (or peer-to-peer) Wi-Fi networks.
  • USB 2.0 (micro-B connector)
  • 3.5 mm stereo audio jack, top-mounted stereo speakers.

Fire is running  on a dual core processor powered by Android 2.3 OS.  Owners will access the internet using Amazon Silk web browser. In addition, customers who purchase Fire will receive a month of Amazon Prime at no charge. The tablet is competitively priced at $199 and Amazon is accepting pre orders with an anticipated ship date of November 15th.

This isn’t your granny’s Kindle, folks.



2011 Philly Republican Primary Endorsements

Otherwise known as ‘Miller Time’. Philadelphia’s Primary Day is one week away and I’ve yet to unveil my endorsements for various public offices up for grabs this coming November. It’s quite exciting in Philly as voters have a golden opportunity to revolutionize Philly’s political landscape with their vote.  The take home message bitterly learned in 2008 and applied in 2010 is simply  that elections have consequences.  It is my hope that Philadelphia residents will rise to the challenge and vote for better solutions instead of more of the same. After careful consideration and note taking, here are Republican candidates I believe will bring Philadelphia back to good.   (more…)

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