Tag Archives: blog

2006 Gomer Davis Pumpkin Chase 5K

This morning I ran the Gomer Davis Pumpkin Chase 5K sponsored by the Wilmerding YMCA. The course was described as flat. Riiiight. It was what I’ve learned to call “Pittsburgh flat”. That is, there were about as many downhills as there were uphills, making the overall change in elevation close to zero. Balanced or not, the steep little hill near the end was a brutal way to finish. The weather was less than perfect – pretty chilly (mid 40’s) and drizzling.

I finished in 25:55 (8:21 pace). I didn’t record splits because the mile markers were not easy to see.

On a tangentially related note, I’ve found a really cool pace calculator and workout prep tool, Runner’s Projections. If you a stats-minded geek who runs, you’ll love it. 🙂

RunPro attempts to calculate equivalent racing abilities for various popular distances based on a specific performance. It’s purpose is to provide a means of comparing equivalent effort between races of different distances. Since it’s not possible to take into account the many variables that affect performance (weather, terrain, course accuracy, personal mental and physical prowess on a given day), you should take these things into consideration when contemplating the results of the program.

One of my favorite uses for RunPro is to plug in a time from a recent race to help determine my goal pace for an upcoming race. This is really handy when the races are of different distances.

RunPro assumes adequate training for all distances. There are many theories on what constitutes adequate training. One general rule of thumb is to have a weekly training base of 4 to 5 times the distance of the race.

A Training Guide is also displayed in the lower area. This guide uses the prediction tables to calculate and display estimated Lactate Threshold, and suggested training paces for various types of workouts including easy runs, long runs, steady runs, tempo runs, alternate miles and intervals.

Speaking of cool stuff, be sure to check out Complete Running Network.

In 2004, Complete Running was launched. Soon after, we created the world’s most comprehensive directory of running blogs – the Running Blog Family (RBF).

In August 2006, Complete Running was relaunched as The Complete Running Network – a collection of knowledgeable authors (mostly RBF alumni) with a passion for running. Topics include all facets of running including tips, gear, news, opinions, inspiration and much more.

Leeching and Scraping

Those WordPress users interested in stopping sploggers and their ilk from scraping/leeching their content might like this plugin.

AntiLeech helps prevent content theft by sploggers.

AntiLeech does not prevent the splogger bots from accessing your site. It produces a fake set of content especially for them that includes links back to your site (and mine, too, ok?) and sends it only to them. When they steal this content, it appears online just like normal, except now you've turned the tables on them and have provided them with useless content.

I've been using it for a couple weeks now and am quite pleased. It detected the Pittsburgh News (not to be confused with Pittsburgh Bloggers) user agent and I have instructed it to deliver gibberish to that agent.

What’s Up With Gravatar.com?

I've had to disable the Gravatar plugin I use due to gravatar.com being down frequently. Anybody know what's become fubar over there?

Update 10/08/06:The Gravatar blog explains what the problem is.

A recent 50% increase in gravatar requests has pushed the current server to the limits, and response times have slowed accordingly. I have disabled signup and login while I migrate the database to the Gravatar 2.0 schema and setup the new and improved gravatar servers.

Once Gravatar 2.0 is operational, I’ll re-enable the plugin.

Charitable Interpretation

Harmonious interaction between bloggers, particularly Christian bloggers, is very important to me. Blogs have tremendous potential for bringing folks of diverse backgrounds together. They can also contribute to fracturing the Body Christ. One courtesy I ask of my commenters is to use "interpretive charity" (aka charitable interpretation). It means, among other things, that we should imagine the blogger or commenter we're about to smite with a withering retort as our dear, sweet grandmother. It also means we should attempt to address in advance ways in which our statements might be misunderstood. Why? Well, apparently textual communication leaves something to be desired. The following statements about email could easily be applied to blogging.

"Though e-mail is a powerful and convenient medium, researchers have identified three major problems. First and foremost, e-mail lacks cues like facial expression and tone of voice. That makes it difficult for recipients to decode meaning well. Second, the prospect of instantaneous communication creates an urgency that pressures e-mailers to think and write quickly, which can lead to carelessness. Finally, the inability to develop personal rapport over e-mail makes relationships fragile in the face of conflict."


"To avoid miscommunication, e-mailers need to look at what they write from the recipient's perspective… One strategy: Read it aloud in the opposite way you intend, whether serious or sarcastic. If it makes sense either way, revise."

78% of email senders believe they are clearly communicating. 91% of email receivers believe they are correctly interpreting. 56% of the time, the receiver correctly interprets the message. I wonder what the stats for blog posts and comments would be.