Thursday, March 20, 2008

One more rest day

I'm still feeling less than 100% today, but I'm definitely better. I'm way better off than both of my children right now. My son made it to school yesterday but he's home again today. His little sister is home sick for the second day in a row. They both have fevers, which I've avoided so far.

With my first ultra of the year 9 days away, I'd rather be cautious, so I'm ready next week. I may try working out easily tomorrow before I teach skiing on the weekend. I definitely need to ski this weekend, because it's the last weekend of the year, and it's when customers hand out tips to the instructors. I need a new pair of ski boots and I'll probably use the tip money to buy them, assuming my customers were happy enough with my work to tip me this year!

With warmer temps and some rain this week, our snow pack seems to be shrinking. The water content might not be lower, but the depth is down a bit. The snow depth in my yard is probably "only" 2 feet right now, down by half from a month ago.

The ultra next weekend will be my first trail run of the year. This will be an improvement on last year, when my second trail run of the year began a couple miles into the Massanutten 100. My first trail run last year was a few easy miles about 4 days before Massanutten. My legs were nowhere close to trail-ready on race day. I'll have to travel out of state for my first few trail runs this season, but I'll have some trail running in before I return to Massanutten for pacing duties. I've got three races planned in MA before then.

I'm still reading "Good Calories, Bad Calories" as I have time. It's very interesting so far in its approach to the history of medical studies researching links between dietary fat, saturated fat, cholesterol levels, heart disease and overall mortality rates. The book points out many places where data was "cherry picked" to support preconceived notions. Of course, the skeptic in me wonders if the author shows a similar (but inverse) bias. The book does quote one researcher who basically said there was so much information out there that no one could read it all.

The mathematician in me knows very well how numbers and statistics can be misused to tell just about story the user wants them to tell. It's no wonder that people are confused about diet and exercise and weight control. Even the so-called experts can't seem to agree on much of anything.

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