Thursday, July 24, 2008


Gary Childs -- Peoria Journal Star

PEORIA. Another unheralded or slightly older than average athlete has fared unexpectedly well in a sporting event. First there is praise and inspiration, and then, as always, the questions begin.

Shevaun Fennell, a Masters competitor, placed third in the Elite field at the recent Evergreen Triathlon, beating athletes she is old enough to have given birth to and taught how to bike and swim. Fennell is not an unknown triathlete, but was certainly not expected to place this high. Many found the performance an uplifting victory of the human spirit. But there are also doubters as to the legitimacy of it all.

“I’m a fan of Shev’s, I really am, but this seems like a bit much. She trains hard, for a girl, but placing this high in an elite field at her age would seem to require, you know, a little outside help,” said local wag and running legend Dan Gray, winking as he mimed someone taking pills and washing them down, then shooting something into their veins, then rapidly growing massive muscles. Local socialite and sometime 5k runner Amelia LaHood Couri-Joseph-Maloof Rashid agreed. “Did you see her calves? Like tree trunks. That ain’t just hill workouts. I mean, I’ve been to her house, so I’ve gone through her medicine cabinet. Who still takes non-prescribed ‘pre-natal vitamins’ six or seven years after giving birth?” Thus, like recent Olympic qualifier Dara Torres in swimming, and the 40 year-old guy in the pole vault, Ms. Fennell has to justify her performance rather than bask in it.

These kinds of accusations are par for the course in today’s world of endurance sports. Running, cycling, and swimming are all notoriously beset by illicit substance use, making triathletes triply suspect. Nevertheless, Ms. Fennell has been visibly angered by the insinuations. Caught outside her plush, isolated home overlooking a verdant hillside, the visibly harried Ms. Fennell, allegedly rushing her children to school, denied any wrongdoing. “Swimming, biking, and running is a break from what I do the rest of the day,” she snapped, “and the entire rest of my day, like this” she said, wiping one child’s nose with her right hand while wrestling the other child into a car seat with the left, “is basically cross-training. You try it.” Ms. Fennell then gulped down a breakfast of what appeared to be eight to ten chocolate-covered espresso beans and hopped on a bike to tow her SUV to school. “Saves gas money,” she grunted over her shoulder, disappearing into the 5 a.m. haze.

Later than day Ms. Fennell held a press conference at the good McDonald’s on North University.

Ms. Fennell has one to many Monster energy drinks -- Undated

“You think I’m dirty?,” she bellowed, pounding her fist on the table and slamming the remain

der of a neon orange “Endurox” beverage. “You think I’m dirty? Test me any time, any place. I’ll freakin’ pee in this cup right here, right now, in front of all y’all – and I’ll drink the freakin’ pee if I fail!” “And if you want blood, you got it!” added Ms. Fennell, launching into an extended air guitar rendition of an Angus Young solo. ‘’Roid rage,” whispered several reporters knowingly to each other in high sing-songy voices.

Some are not waiting to pass judgment. Ms. Fennell’s high school mile-relay teammate Suzy Buckeye has returned her third-place district medal to the Ohio Scholastic Sports Association and says the other team members are weighing their options. “Shev was always, just, different. Like she always really wanted to win or something. And I always knew she’d stop at nothing to get what she wanted, like studying all the time just for a stupid math test, or talking to the guys on the boys track team, like, non-stop, even when they already had girlfriends. These latest accusations do not surprise me in the least, and I decline to be associated in the public mind with such a person.” Ms. Fennell attributed Ms. Buckeye’s comments to “sour grapes” and a “desperate need for attention,” noting that Ms. Buckeye has auditioned for no fewer than 11 “reality” television programs and writes letters to the editor of her local newspaper every week, often just to describe her own social life and likely whereabouts next weekend.

Ms. Fennell should, in the short run, be able to capitalize on her new success. Her only current sponsors are Monster energy drink and the Ginseng Institute of the Andes, but others are likely to come knocking quickly. Still, would-be sponsors are justifiably cautious about endurance athletes in general, especially those trying to crawl back to the start of the hill after going over.

So it goes. As the suns sets and I prepare to meet my journalist pals for some after-work suds at Sully’s, I see from my window Ms. Fennell herself, swimming a few miles against the current in the mighty Illinois river. Is she towing that barge, or just beating it? Is she the real deal, or is she using the Illinois to so toxify herself that no blood or urine test will ever be valid? Perhaps we’ll never know.

Monday, July 21, 2008

300 Men Chicked by Roadside Bombshell

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Sat Jul 19, 2008 11:50am EDT

HUDSON IL, July 19 (Reuters) - Hudson is eerily quiet today as workers loaded debris from the roadside bombshell that Chicked nearly 300 men. Nobody saw it coming.

Authorities are looking for these two suspects -- (above photo undated )

Four detained opposition activists in ex-Soviet Belarus were released on Friday without charge after being questioned about Shevaun Fennell's unexpected explosion on Saturday. The event, an international triathlon in the Central Illinois region of the EU Union states is attended by notable world dignitaries and socialites most notably by the former

United States Vice President and Nobel Prize recipient, Al Gore (unharmed). When asked, Mr. Gore stated: "I am just glad no earth warming emissions were released in her carnage. As a proud man, it was very hard to watch. I cringed when I realized what was happening!"

The majority of tri-guys, considered emotionally secure about their manliness by other athletes (just look at those outfits) managed to escape harm. However, more than 120 men experienced serious wounds about thier egos, many critically in the July 19 blast. The final death toll is not yet known but is expected to rise. It was supposed to be a festive event in Hudson IL marking the 12th annual Evergreen Triathlon. Officials described the incident as "feminist brute hooliganism", playing down any political dimension, and Race Director Colleen Klein has vowed not to launch a crackdown ahead of an ongoing investigation by the USA Triathlon, the sanctioning committee for US triathlons.

Victims are laid on beach awaiting identification by loved ones.

The opposition says about a dozen activists were detained.

It is known that Ms Fennell once belonged to the Tri-Peoria Triathlon Team, a nationalist paramilitary group founded in the 1990s and until recently thought to be disbanded. The group known for thier multi colored form fitting uniforms originates in the tiny county of Peoria wedged between Marshal, Putnam, Russia and three European Union states.

"Four people deemed sympathizers by local authorities were detained on July 20-21 and were released today, including my husband Reid Hansen, Bev Enslow, Beth Haynes and Anna Breaux" said Sheila Hansen, deputy head of the World Union of Belarussians, a group representing ethnic Belarussians world-wide. Belarussia is known for multi-sport tolerance and political support for the Tri-Peoria movement.

"Of course, no charges were pressed against any of them. They were only questioned twice over all this time. One day passed and they were released."

Mr. Hansen, upon release issued a brief statement read at a pro Tri-Peoria rally. He stated that he was more interested in punishing Rich Geibelhausen than in helping to catch Ms. Fennell. "Forget Shev everyone, this Geibelhausen guy makes all the trouble for me. He just won't give it up! I have had to hire a coach with my own money for the love of humanity, why can't he just move to a less competitive town!"

Some opposition officials say the detentions could compromise the parliamentary elections and have suggested they may boycott the poll. Western leaders accuse the authorities of violating fundamental male rights, and Klein hopes the incident will not deter the upcoming Belarus election. Some experts even warn of falling birth rates in the region. The impact will be noticable for years if not decades to come.

Several activists were released in recent days and officials from various groups said four remained in detention. Including Ms Breaux who exploded her tires in protest of the police reaction. Suspects may be held for 10 days without charge under Belarussian law.

"She is old enough to be my Mom!" said chicked elite athlete, 21 year old Jarid Smith, "This is just something that cannot be allowed. She was looking right at us at the start. This old lady in the elite heat. She asked who of us had been born after 1985. We all raised our hands. She then said she was old enough to be our mom and told us to keep that in mind as she was passing us. We all kind of laughed but deep down, we were pretty terrified."

"Race Officials and police have said nothing about any roundup. "

An interior ministry spokesman said only that no charges had been laid. No one has claimed responsibility for the bombshell's organizers but Outlaw renegade Sean Ribordy is a suspect. Ribordy, not seen since the US invasion of Afganistan is reported to be hiding in remote tribal regions of Pakistan with 6 other family members. Ribordy has a history of coaching swimmers and triathletes and is known for this kind of incident. This blast has many elements known to have been attributed to Mr. Ribordy.

Police this week launched house-to-house questioning in apartment blocks, with officers asking residents about their whereabouts at the time of the bombshell's explosion, where they performed their military service and whether they owned a power-tap.

Within hours of the explosion, Klein dismissed the head of the influential security council and her chief of staff.

On Tuesday, she appointed Yuri Zhadobin, the head of the security service, still known by its Soviet-era KGB initials, as chairman of the security council. (Writing by Ron Popeski; Editing by Charles Dick)

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Friday, July 18, 2008

Namaste Mr. Schroff

Rob thinks barefoot running or monkey feet will make him faster than Schroff. He's experimenting with various aspects (diet, cross training, technique, gear, etc.) of his training. But in his search for performance improvement he discovered a secret that enhances not simply his running but so much more. He found yoga. Initially he came to stretch out those incredibly tight muscles. But then he found his breath. Breathe in, breathe out. Simple. With this he can achieve mental focus and clarity. The breath was the link between mind and body. The breath is an essential key to more focused training. Being self aware during a training run or a race and learning to control your movement and stay in the momement. I try to draw on the Prāna, our life force, or vital energy. Particularly, it comes from the breath. If you master the breath you are energized.

Outside of India, yoga is mostly associated with the practice of asanas (postures) of Hatha Yoga or as a form of exercise. We work as much on strength and balance as we do on stretching all the time being aware of our body. Maybe yoga won't make Rob faster than Schroff but yoga can bring him new awareness of his body and the role of the breath.

When greeting a peer, a "namaste" with hands in front of chest and a slight bow is considered polite. We use it to indicate deep respect. Get your body and mind working together. Learn to enjoy the journey as much as the destination. Come join us on Monday evenings at 5:30 for a yoga session tailored for runners at all levels. Walk-in's are welcome.


Some more pictures of Sheila's class:

Friday, July 11, 2008

IVC HS 4x800 1985 Morton IL AA Sectional Meet

A 17 year old Danimal!

"We entered the sectional as the second seeded 4x800 team .03 behind Peoria Manual. The team consisted of lead runner senior Jeff McMorrow, 2nd leg freshman Tobi Peters, 3rd leg senior Dan Johnson and anchor senior Rick Lingenfelter. Dan ran a great third leg giving us a lead which I handed to Peoria Manual's anchor (and my future Bradley teammate) Nate Ciota. Shouldn't have ever let Nate catch and beat me. We ran 7:53.4 (PR and school record) and qualified for state in second place. Manual ran 7:52.1. May 17th, 1985."

When Pigs Fly

This looks fun!

Pepper and Salt

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Running Form

Here is a demonstration of running mechanics. They slow the shot's down and use captions to explain what they are looking for. As far as the music....well lets just say it's a little too boy's town for my taste. Did you find this video helpful?

And here is one for barefoot runners. The end of the clip does a great job of showing in slow motoin what the foot does when you run. What do you think? Ready to try some more barefoot running?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Fallujah's First 5K Road Race a Great Success

Gateway Pundit: Fallujah's First 5K Road Race a Great Success

Some great pictures at this blog. (Un)fortunately no IVS runners were around. Enjoy!

A competitive meal in 15 minutes! Cooking Faster than Schroff!

Eggplant Pasta with Feta
1. Mince 5-8 cloves of garlic, very fine.
2. Sautee garlic with 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat.
3. Add one can diced tomatoes with juice.
4. Once tomato juice has been reduced, sprinkle with 1/4c white wine (optional).
5. While tomato mixture cooks, chop roasted eggplant and zucchini.
6. Add veggies to tomato mixture.
7. Sprinkle with about 2 teaspoons oregano.
8. Chop 1/2 block of feta cheese.
9. Turn off heat and add feta to veggies.
10.Pour over cooked rotini.
11.Sprinkle with minced basil.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Volume vs Intensity -- Joe Friel

Which is more important for improving race performance in endurance athletes, the volume of training or the intensity of training? It’s obvious that both play a role in racing well. But athletes tend to place a lot of value on volume than on intensity. I’ve yet to hear an athlete when asked how training is going respond by talking about intensity. The answer is almost always based on volume (“I rode 200 miles last week.”) But given the choice, which should you place more emphasis on when making decisions about your training?

Monday, July 7, 2008

Barefoot Blaps!

OK this is what havin a good time is all about! Wow. No way is this kid is ever dating my daughter! I would never be able to catch him!

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Now you can have your shoe and eat it too!

Hitoshi Mimura, 59, is a former marathon runner who became a master craftsman for Asics, the Japanese sporting goods manufacturer.

Later this month, Ryan Hall and Deena Kastor of the United States plan to begin testing the latest design from the distance-running equivalent of Manolo Blahnik. Their shoemaker is a Japanese master craftsman whose soles are renowned not for space-age gels or air bladders but for the gripping properties of rice husks.
The husks, which are ground and imbedded in the rubber soles of racing flats, are designed to absorb water and to provide up to 10 percent better traction along the 26.2-mile marathon course at the Beijing Olympics in August. (Read the story in it's entirety in the NY Times by clicking on the headline).

My wife says I have more running shoes than I really need but hey what can I say? I am a sucker for a groovy shoe. Adam, can I get some soy sauce for these?

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Running Barefoot in the Snow.

Ever been Chicked?

Ever been chicked??? It bothers some guys to be beaten in a race by a woman. They seem to think the fairer sex could never pass them on their quest to the finish line. When it happens, results can be devastating. I had to get used to it early on. This town has too many fast women, so I never have to go far for an ass whooping. Nancy’s one of those women I need to warn you about. She's been smoking my butt for years. I was quite proud to FINALLY beat her last year at Steamboat (by about 10 feet)…..Is there a term for that too?

Now “getting chicked” should not be confused with being “over-chicked”, a term referring to a guy who gets a girl way over his head. We all agree, Chris A. seriously over-chicked with Nancy. 

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Coach Greg Sicks The Dogs on Whitey!

I snapped these on my way down to the Marathon Training group run. Coach Greg and his dogs went rabbit hunting last night! Adam, that had to hurt! Way to go!

Coach Greg, Adam, Chris W., Chris A., Joe and Jen, Nancy, Lorne

Here's what Chris had to say:


I have gained another level of respect for Adam after last night's workout.

For the first set, he started a 400 every 2 minutes for 16 minutes. He ran each of these at 70 seconds. So, he basically ran eight 400's at 70 seconds each with 50 seconds of active rest (no slacking) in between. Joe Every and Lorne Mills and I took turns running the 400's with Adam to try to pace him through the workout. In my case, it was more like just trying to keep up.

Then he took a whopping 4 minute break between the first and second set of 400's.

For the second set, he started a 400 every 1:40 for 12 minutes. He also ran each of these at 70 seconds. So, he ran 7 more 400's at 70 seconds each with 30 seconds of active rest in between.
Greg White made the comment that Adam might just as well have kept running at 70 second pace because he wasn't really getting much recovery anyway. Also, Chris Alexander just happened to show up for this second set of 400's. It was a good thing because I was having a hard time keeping up with Adam at that point.

Adam White is a machine!

My workout was a little more on the mortal side... Starting with Adam's second 400, I started every other one with him. So, I ran #'s 2, 4, 6, and 8 from the first set. I got about 2:50 rest in between my 400's (yes, I am a slacker). I also ran every other repeat for the second set (#2, 4, 6). But this time I only got 2:10 rest in between. I told Adam that about the most help that I was in pacing was him being able to hear me about 10 yards behind him breathing like a freight train. But, I did manage to keep my 400's in the 70-75 second range. And, after that Lorne and I did a 4 mile "cool down" in Springdale that turned into more of a progression run with the last mile at just over 6:00 pace.

Again, I was amazed at what Adam did. I guess getting fast and staying fast isn't easy. In fact, it looked like it might hurt...

Best regards,