Blair’s Weekly Update 03-31-2013

Doc’s Talk by Andrew Laurence:

Dr. Scaff talked about how to judge if you are going at the right pace, i.e. the Talk Test.

One way to calculate your maximum pulse rate is 200 minus half your age, or 220 minus your age.  Example:  40-year-old runner.  Half of 40 = 20.  200 – 20 = 180.  Or, 220 – 40 = 180.  Then you calculate 75% of that which = 130 to 140 beats per minute.

The Talk Test
If you have a person increase their running pace until they stop talking and you take their heart rate, they are at their threshold heart rate.  The beauty of this is it works at altitude.  If you’re at altitude you get out of breath faster, that tells you when to slow down.  We call this the talk test and it has been validated in the literature.

So, to determine your optimal heart rate using the Talk Test:  You never run so fast you cannot talk, and you never run so slow that you can sing.  It works perfectly and that is all you need to know about calculating your heart rate.

Last week Dr. Scaff said that we switch into fat metabolism after 40 minutes of running and we are burning 80% fat; …however, fat is very inefficient.  Fat will let you run forever at a slow pace, but when you are running for competition you want about 10% carbohydrate to burn, e.g. in the form of drinks of some kind or the Honolulu Marathon Clinic recommends “power” pretzels (i.e. the standard pretzels you buy at the grocery store).

Running in the morning probably will help you lose weight faster than in the afternoon because you are not eating at that point in time.  If you get up and run before breakfast, you switch into fat metabolism more quickly, and you burn your fat until you eat.

Dr. Scaff recently found a good study showing 2 meals per day or 1 meal per day is ok if you like that.  So if you don’t want to want to eat breakfast, you don’t have to, and while everybody will scold you, you’ll be just as healthy as if you had eaten breakfast, except you’ll be losing weight a little bit faster.  In the morning you have been asleep for several hours and you are basically in a fasting position, which is why we call it breakfast; we are breaking the fast.

For more information on these and other running-related topics, read Your First Marathon – The Last Word In Long Distance Running, by Jack H. Scaff Jr., M.D., F.A.C.S.M., available for purchase at the Honolulu Marathon Clinic on Sundays and online at:

Next week:  Heat, a byproduct of exercise, what’s good about it, what’s bad about it.

To read full, unabridged summaries of the Doc’s Talks:
1)  Go to the Honolulu Marathon Clinic web site (
2)  Look under the “Categories” listing.
3)  Click on “Doc’s Talk”.


Table Duty:

Thanks to Grey Staff Leader Andy for the great food and drinks at table duty!   The fruits, pretzels and pastries along with the drinks were great!  A few more slots are open for table duty and we are looking for volunteers!


Second Shoe Talk – April 7th. @ 9:00 a.m.:

Intermediate and advanced staff leaders and all runners should try to cut their group runs short and attend this very informative talk.  Gaston at the Running Room has a wealth of knowledge and is an excellent speaker!  Also, a 20% discount on shoes offered to attendees only.


Group Reports:

Red Group by Jeff Beard

(Pace 9:00 – 10:00 min. per mile)

Jeff was out ill but promised to return next week!


GREY Group by Andy Hignite:

(Pace: 10:30 to 11:00) (goal –  sub-5 hour marathon)

Happy Easter!

Are they GREYS, are they Silver … They are the Psychedelic Running Hoard!.  The combined Greys and Silvers formed a group of nearly 40 runners for their last 6 miler.  The group was lead by leader Nikki while Byron and Lynnae tried to keep them in order.  Ivie, Ron, Andy (Table duty) and Alberto were out this week.  Nikki ran for her life chased by the hoard.  The group ran their last 6 miler at a pace a little faster than usual.

With these large groups, please help our leaders by remembering a few important items:

Maintain single file.  We received feedback that many of the groups bunched up on the run.

Give each other space.  If you give the runner ahead of you at least two paces between you, we will not bunch up or step on each other.

Give the group leader some space.  If you are on their heels it is very hard for them to maintain a steady pace.  If you are running beside them, you are limiting their capability to respond to obstacles and oncoming runners.
We successfully finished our first month of training.  Congratulations! Each month we push our distance up about 2 miles.  Have you made any new friends yet? As our runs get longer take the opportunity to make new friends.  By December we will all be great friends and know everything about each other.  The topics will flow and go into areas that will amaze you (eating habits, bowl movements, you name it).

Next week is our shoe talk.  We plan to lay out a 8 mile run with the shoe talk on the route so it will be a long morning.

Midweek run: for now, Wednesdays are confirmed: 5:30 pm Ala Moana Park, Magic Island front of parking lot. 1 hour run.

Stats today: – 6.1 miles – Ave pace 11:26 (including stops) – Ave running pace ~ 9:47


April 7th – 8 miles with the Shoe Talk (run to Running Room)

April 14th – 8 miles

April 21st – 8.5 miles with Kahala Ave

April 28th – 8.5 miles with Kahala Ave & Marathon finish


 Silver Group by Lynnae Lee:

(Pace- 11:00 – 12:00 mi. per mile)

Unfortunately, group leader Alberto is still sidelined with a knee injury, so the Silvers joined the Grays for this Easter Sunday run.  The Silvers got to experience a little quicker pace, especially going up Diamond Head in the first mile.  Perhaps the quicker pace could be attributed to those needing to get to their other Easter events??  Evelyn brought her daughter, Tara, for the first time, who couldn’t help shouting in response to anything her mother asked.  Uh, I think that’s why they say don’t run with earphones.  (Or if you must have your music, make sure within the middle of a group, or have one earphone out.)  It was also nice to see Joe, Byron, Jun, Sun Hee and Yong Moon enjoying the run.  John gave his Vibrams a break and was sporting his new shoes, which is probably why he was a little slower.  (It’s not often that I’m able to keep up with him as I was this day.)  The early morning chill gave way to a gorgeous day – the ocean looked so inviting as we were coming back over Diamond Head.  Special thanks to Gray group leader Andy for the wonderful extra snacks!  In the end we completed another 6.5-miles at our fastest pace yet, thanks to the Grays.

It is obvious that many are doing their homework.  Continue to do 2 homework runs of 60 minutes minimum duration with a rest day in between.  Speed and pace do not matter at this point. You just want to get your body used to being in motion for a set duration.

Shoe talk is next week, April 7th at 9am, so please make plans to attend.  There’s always great information, and this year they’re offering a great benefit for HMC attendees.  Next week we’ll cut the run a little short with an option to run to the Running Room for the shoe talk since parking is limited.  Bring your money if you’re planning to buy new shoes immediately after the talk.  I’m still recycling shoe boxes for needy children, and will gladly accept your donation.  They will be decorated and filled with goodies for kids for the holidays.

Thought for the week:  The rules of the road apply to runners and pedestrians as much as it does to drivers.  I was reminded of this while running yesterday morning.  I stopped at a red light just outside Ala Moana park.  A pedestrian wearing headphones opted to cross against the red hand since no cars were on the road.  Once the light turned green I continued my run into the park, along the same route as the pedestrian, and as I got closer, I noticed the police car that was also waiting at the same intersection stopped along side her.  The officer opened his door and gave her a stern lecture about her poor choice to ignore the red light.  I didn’t stay around to see if she got a ticket.  The look of shock on the girl’s face was priceless, and I must admit, gave me some satisfaction.  The moral – look around before you jaywalk…nah, nah, no, we cannot condone breaking the law.  (Guru Sam would never allow that.)  The real point is to make sure that we as runners follow the laws too – to be courteous and safe.  Enjoy the roads!


White Group by Blair Hoashi

(Pace – 12:00 – 13:00 min. per mile)

Staff leaders Guru Sam, Richard, Val, and Blair led another large group (40 runners!) up Diamond Head, onto the Kahala neighborhood, then back to our clinic start – total mileage 6.23 miles.  The air was a bit chilly and perfect for our morning run in the sun.  Thanks to our stalwart regular “family members” like Diane, Russel, Kumiko, Mayumi, Elena,  Quen, LeeAnn, and Gary who always help with controlling our large groups and also assist in maintaining a comfortable pace – 12:00 – 12:30 minutes per mile.  (They also help to keep Guru Sam in check.)  John and Stacy, Glenda and Clyde (the Ewa Beach teachers), Dr. Lauren, Gary, Dayna, Stacey were a few of the newbies running with us today.  There were many more runners and I apologize for missing your names this morning.  I will get to know more of you as our training progresses. 

At Triangle Park we talked about shoes but also our suggestion for the “proper” long distance running attire – coolmax or dry fit type of shorts, tops and socks to help prevent chafing and skin irritation and also to wick away moisture much more quickly than cotton.   Guru Sam also mentioned the liberal use of Vaseline or other lubricants to prevent painful or annoying irritation to our skin.

Our “official run” will be cut short (to Triangle Park and back) next week to accommodate the Shoe Talk.  Runners not attending should run the prescribed 6 miles.  We will be missing our Guru next week as he goes on a weeklong trip to the mainland and “family member” Russel who leaves for a trip to Japan.

Eh, take it easy:

During the early part of our training schedule, our Sunday runs should be fun and stress and injury free; we should not be” too serious” in our training yet.  At this point in time (unless already experienced), a member should get accustomed to being on the road for an hour or more.   Getting used to “pounding the pavement” for an extended amount of time at our particular pace requires “slow and deliberate” physical conditioning.   Remember how difficult it was just to do a mile around the park when you first started?   Well, we all have to build around a strong foundation and the homework runs along with the Sunday runs are ones’ foundation.

Speed at this stage is not that important.  As you become more diligent in your homework, your speed and stamina will improve.  While the Guru and the other staff members might set a pace that may seem initially too slow or too deliberate, please remember that 26.2 miles is a long way and our training has just begun.   What Sam and the rest of the leaders are trying to do is to have as many members be as injury free as possible and be able to participate in all of the “trials and tribulations”(as well as the fun, merriment and camaraderie) that you will go through in your training with us for the marathon.   “Hundreds of runners” have passed through the White Group’s training who now have become prolific runners and staff leaders.   So for now, take it easy, be patient and enjoy the scenery and company!

What’s for breakfast next week!

Please continue your homework runs and by all means, show up next Sunday (a very important key)!

Your best is yet to come!!



Green 15’s by Louis Crompton:

Green 15 had “half” its crew show up – about 12 today went up and over the hill to see if we could spot any procrastinator whales… no we didn’t see any… bon voyage.  Being Easter Sunday we were surprised and delighted at the triangle water stop to have our pace leader Lou – who was wearing old sneakers instead of running shoes – distribute what he planned to be Easter eggs… the scarcity of those for last minute shoppers caused him to buy Hershey Kisses instead, but the thought was there…mahalo… and we used the dose of energy to re- climb the hill in a second scan for those long gone whales.  The 4.4 mile hike took 1 hr 7 min… that’s 15 min / mile again.  If March is a precursor of things to come, plan to finish your marathon in 6-35, you CAN do it!  Do your two homework assignments and be ready next Sunday for 2 wide laps around the park / zoo [4.8 miles].   For the couple team members who missed the shoe talk last Sunday, you are ENCOURAGED to attend next Sunday at 9 [excellent generic shoe info plus sign up for a 20% discount which you may use in summer to buy marathon shoes] – you can do1 lap with us and proceed mauka on Kapahulu to the RR at 819; retrace your steps to return to the park. Aloha


Golden 14’s by Dean Takashige:

Happy Easter everyone, the group was much smaller than last week probably due to all the other festivities going on this weekend.

It was a nice clear cool morning. There were about 22 in our group this morning. This will be changing while everyone is discovering the pace that feels right. As Dr Scaff said in his talk, the easiest gauge is being able to talk and run at the same time. So be patient and listen to your bodies.  I was asked by one of the new participants,” should I start in the 14s or 15s?”
The best answer is just pick a group and if it feels too slow move up to the next group or if is feels too fast slow down.

Reminder next week is the second shoe talk.   If you missed the first one let us know so we can adjust your run next week so you are able to make the talk. As a group we are not planning to attend since most went last week,

We ran 4.39 miles in 1 hour and 5 minutes and burned 412 cals. This is a continuous time from start to finish. I don’t start and stop the clock every time we stop to drink water. I am measuring the total time on the road, running, walking or stopped while drinking water.

Drinking water is very important; some of you will have to force yourself to drink in the beginning. Learning how to drink water is also part of your training. Finally your choice to carry water bottles like myself or some of the others is up to you. Ask different people in the group;  everyone has their favorites for one reason or the other. Try it out see if you like it or not. Its not required since there is water along the route.

Keep on asking these questions.

The plan for April is 4 miles out to the “Triangle Park and back.
Do your homework for the week which is 2 days one hour apiece and we will see you next Sunday.


Lucky 13’s by Chris Isham:

Chris, Medeline, Ed, and Derby led 27 runners on their first trip over the hill.  The morning was crisp with light breezes and a perfect morning for a run.  Total mileage was 4.2 at 12:23 pace.  Outstanding job by everyone!

We talked about getting our bodies used to hydrating as we move to longer distances and with hotter days approaching.   We also talked about “embracing” the hill as a mental approach to finishing each run strong.

Have a great week, hydrate, and do your homework!


Da Comment Corner:

Gaston is the Man – Shoe Talk Deux:

This Sunday, Assistant Manager Gaston of the Running Room offers his knowledge and experience in his Shoe Talk geared for the more experienced runner.  Everyone, who did not attend the previous talk, should plan to attend.  Great information is passed on for all running levels by Gaston.  Special thanks to Manager Lerma for setting these talks up every year.  Also much mahalos to Gaston for always doing such a great job!


Global Exposure:

Our subscriber ship keeps growing daily and currently is well over 1000 members!  It is viewed all over the world – runners from Japan, New Zealand, Australia, South Korea, Singapore, the Bahamas, Canada, Israel, Britain, Germany, the Czech Republic, and many more throughout the world have viewed our newsletters!  It is a testament to Dr. Scaff and the HMC staff for all of their great work done on behalf of all runners everywhere!

Special thanks should go out to “update” contributors Andrew Laurence (Doc’s Talk); Peter Garcia (Announcements); Les Young (Advanced Group);  Jeff Beard (Red Group); Rosie Adam-Terem (Pink Group; Ivie Kumura and Andy Hignite (Grey Group); Lynnae Lee, Alberto Olivas, Paris Monti (Silver Group); Sam Usman, Dwight Bartolome ,Blair Hoashi(White Group); and Beginners’ Groups Norm Uyeda, Dean Takashige, Louis Crompton, Chris Isham, Medeline Harkin, Cliff Hand, and George Ushijima for all  of their efforts and also their tremendous  insight.

Also, Bob Lew, our webmaster puts all it together for effortless distribution to all of our members.  He also puts out the “technical fires” as they arise.  Much mahalo, Bob!


See you at the Shoe Talk and at the water stop,