Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wed More Double Finger Knit Word

Today I just picked up where I left off and continued working on the double finger-knitting. The funny thing is that I stitched a typo at the end I did "FOU" instead of "FOR". This is actually a difficult task so I like that a mistake can help increase the suspense of, 'can he do it?'. Again I just ran a little over 6 miles at an 8 minute mile pace. This time tried draping the scarf around my neck as it got longer. It gets warm.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Still Running, Treadmill Double Knit

Post race now. I am still training, yet tapering down in distance and intensity. I decided to run at 8mph which was my half marathon average from Saturday. I ran for around 6 and a half miles. This time I did the double knitting and put in a new word, "I'LL REM..." is as far as I got. Double Knit means that it is reversed in colors on the back side and very thick yet stable. I worked with 14 loops on my fingers, more than most other training scarves that I have done, yet half as wide with the finished product.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Kansas City Half Marathon & Finger Knitting

David Babcock with the scarf he finger-knit while setting a new Personal Record time of 1:44:19 during the 2014 Kansas City Half Marathon on October 18th, 2014.
Today was the Kansas City Marathon. It was great.
I was up at 4:30am and out at 5:15 with my brother-in-law Stephen. We got to the Crown Center around 6:20 and I made my way quickly to meet with Carey Wickersham of Fox 4 KC news. We did a quick interview and they took some video of me finger knitting. The clip as I saw it online later was great. It was dark and I didn't remember that I had switched out the gold yarn for "Citron" but I did use a Royal looking blue. Also I am not selling the scarves, currently just trading for stories through the Lion Brand blog.

I found the 1:45 pace group and met a few people quickly before the start. I crossed the start line fairly close to the clock start around 7:05. It was still dark and I had my sunglasses on. Pretty quickly my sunglasses started fogging up. I fell behind the pace group but was still keeping up. I shed my extra hoodie by mile 1 and my knit hat a mile later. I was heating up pretty quickly. I was wearing tights and a long sleeve shirt the whole race. I had taken them off before this photo because they were wet and cold at the end. My glasses stayed foggy and I finally took them off just before the Plaza.

A lot of people that I was running with recognized me from the past news or commented on my knitting. Everyone was very supportive and generally amazed. I came up behind one runner that had the word "BLIND" on his back. I ran with him a ways to talk and confirmed that it was Jeff Benelli, whom I had read about before the race. He said he had heard of me too which was nice.

The finger knitting was keeping me very busy and the miles just flew by. It also helped that I couldn't see very far to be distracted by the crowds and spectators. I was able to yell back to a few groups of spectators that noticed me. Hopefully some looked me up and donated. At one point a ball of yarn popped out of my bag and I had to quickly retrieve it.

It was a nice relief to separate from the Full Marathoners and be closer to the finish without feeling quite as tired. This was my first half here where I had only run two fulls before. I thought that I was running ahead of the 1:45 pace group, but it ends up that I was between the pacers. I finally passed the front pacer with just 1.5 miles to go. On the last stretch I wasn't sure how I wanted to look crossing the line. I tried to put the knitting over my shoulder to make my bib number more visible but it didn't work very well. My bib was covered by my hands and scarf most of the race. Hopefully they will post pictures of me anyway. If anyone spectating has pictures please send them my way.

I was super excited to finish with a new personal record time of 1:44:19. I had my watch to confirm. My previous record for the half was 1:47 and that was without knitting. I had done a 1:44 in training on the road and a 1:36 on a treadmill, but a timed race with lots of people and variables is what really counts.

My family wasn't there to greet me. They were stuck in traffic somewhere. I went back up to the finish line to watch people coming in through about 2:15. It took only a short time to get really cold from being wet. Fortunately I had gear-checked some warm clothes and was able to change while I waited for family to show up.

I was able to see my brother-in-law cross at 3 hours and some change. I am proud of him for sticking with it, even though he didn't train this year. For the pictures I changed back into my shirt and shorts while we were still at the park.

Great race. Thank you Kansas City. Thank you pace runners. Thank you family. Thank you donors.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Easy Day

So, I am still tapering down. Treadmill inside 83 minutes - 9.8 miles while knitting a scarf with WoolEase Thick and Quick's Spice color. I am looking forward to the half marathon in Kansas City this Saturday. That will be my next run. So I have the next two days off to eat clean carbs and store up energy. My wife took some video. The original video had a lot of noise so I had to use a little bit of a filter.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Indigenous Peoples Day?

Also known as Columbus day. Hard to take a holiday seriously when no one gets it off for school or work. I ran at the gym because it was a rainy day. I did a scarf in the Woolease Thick and Quick "Fig" color. I finished it in 70 minutes 21 seconds and ran 8.2 miles. My wife was with me and kindly took some photos and videos as I ran.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Long 20

Actually it was 20.14 miles in 2 hours and 47 minutes. I got a late start around 4:40 because I was busy all day. I was almost out the door when I discovered a leak in my water bladder backpack. I did a quick patch with super glue and packing tape. I had to do a larger loop on my run which took me up along the highway. After my run I found out that my family drove by in the car on their way home from the city but they were afraid to honk at me for fear that I might get startled and wander into the road or the ditch. The highway actually has a good 6 foot shoulder as opposed to some of the other county roads with zero shoulder and speeding cars. The longer route helped me avoid the worst of the dog houses. It was around 55 degrees for the whole run. The sun went down at 6:43 and I still had another 40 minutes that I was running after that. It was pretty dark without many streetlights for my last two miles. I had a reflector belt on but I was also wearing sunglasses. I did it! now I am supposed to taper down in distance until the NYC Marathon. On the 18th I will run the KC Half Marathon, which still fits in with the taper schedule which puts that day as a 14 mile run.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Taking It Easy

I only ran 13.1 today. I ran outside on my big loop but once I hit 1 hour and 41 minutes for my half distance I walked the rest of the way home. I believe that is my new personal best for a half-marathon distance outside with hills, dogs, traffic, wind, and self pacing. I will have my longest training run coming up this weekend so I didn't want to push the last mile and a quarter. It was kind of nice to have a long walk at the end of the run to start cooling down as opposed to just crashing on the living room floor at home.