My 4th place finish.

I decided to run the 2012 Brickcity 5k on Friday night. I had all day Saturday to talk myself out of it. Well, as you can probably guess, I did run the race and got 4th place overall. I was happy with my performance even though I knew I could have done better had I not run on a whim. I took 1st in my age group also! Thank God the three guys in front of me were much older and younger than me.

During the race, I was thinking about how I could become faster and what dieting steps I needed to take to drop my body weight down to be more competitive. I realized later that probably wasn’t the most productive way to go about running a race. Truth be told, I was actually having a good time while I was struggling to breathe. I’m convinced that it’s the feeling after a good run that hooks new runners into this crazy sport. More to follow…..

Hypermiling 101

My first attempt at hypermiling (techniques used to increase your vehicle’s miles per gallon) has shown impressive results. I went from my usual 32MPG in the city to 39MPG in one week. The 39MPG is even better than my typical 36MPG on the highway!

Hypermiling can be defined as any improvement in MPG that exceeds the EPA average for your make and model of vehicle. For example, my 2008 Honda Fit (automatic transmission) is supposed to get 27mpg in the city/30mpg on the highway. As you can see, I was a little better than average when using my normal driving habits. Now, I exceed those number by a measurable amount. What I have changed are as follows:

1. I drive less aggressively.(ex..speeding around people and taking off from a light or stop sign.)

2. I shut down my vehicle when I’m at a stop for longer than 30 seconds.(Again, stop lights, traffic, train, etc)

3. I never drive over 60mph because research has shown that anything over the 55/60mph range is wasting fuel.(http://www.consumerenergycenter.org/transportation/consumer_tips/speeding_and_mpg.html)

4. I rarely use the air conditioning. I instead opt for rolling down the window. Contrary to common belief, having the windows down does not affect aerodynamics very much.

There are more extreme methods (putting the car in neutral on downhills and shutting down the vehicle at certain times) which are available if you wish to research them. I recommend even slight changes in driving habits. I will continue to update and monitor my progress and I recommend you do the same.

PS: I use gas cubby app on my iphone to record my usage data.

Men do read.

I love to read. My friends also love to read. I do feel, however, that most men don’t talk about what books they are currently reading. One of the first questions I ask people when I meet them is “what are your favorite books?” I do this because I’m always looking for recommendations from other guys about books which they’ve loved or currently reading.

Over the next few months I’m going to be posting what new books (fiction and non-fiction) I’ve been reading and what I like and dislike. I would appreciate anyone who reads my posts to do the same on my blog. Thank you and keep reading.

Scott

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