The Beach

As previously mentioned 2010 started off with a run on a beach in Cancun, Mexico. Well, it just so happened that my second run of 2011 went down the exact same beach.

I always like comparing results from year to year looking for what the improvement has been – or not. It’s just a good way to see how your form is developing.

Two days ago I did an almost 12km run on the beach between our hotel, Puerto Morelos, and the hotels beyond the village and this morning I ran a 5k. Should have been 6k, but a football (soccer) injury made me change my mind. Wouldn’t want to seriously injure myself. In-between the two runs I tested the half ironman swim distance – more on that in a different post.

First a few things about running on a beach:
– the sand means you’re not as fast as usual;
– if you run on the beach, chances are you’re in a warm location – that could well slow you down as well;
– right at the water beaches usually have a downhill from the beach towards the ocean, which means your running ground isn’t level. I suspect that could hurt your knees and hips – watch out for that!

Either way, especially the run this morning brought back memories of last as I was on the beach at 6:30 to enjoy the setting sun. There were a few other runners out, but I guess that most people tend to keep their eyes closed until a bit later in the day.

As mentioned, the football injury kept me from doing my normal run pace (as did stopping to take pictures and video). Basically I’m unable to run heel-strike without pain in my left shin, so I got in 5k of fore-foot running. It made me think that even if fore-foot running just takes you forward at the same pace as heel strike, just being able to sustain fore-foot running for a decent distance adds flexibility to your run, makes sure you can run if heel-strike-specific muscles are injured, and probably just strengthens your leg in general so your normal heel-strike run will be more stabile and powerful.

Either way, those are some of the benefits I saw today and thoroughly enjoyed.

Thoughts on Moscow

Currently flying the last hour to Amsterdam returning from a few days in Moscow – look below for a few posts.

Moscow surprised me a bit. Despite reports saying that English is becoming lingua franca in business, the capital still seems like there’s a long way to go before this communication barrier really dissappears. As in most other countries fluency in English is seen in international companies (granted: I only have 1 example), and some internationally related hospitality i.e. hotels. In stores and on the street I was not able to get far with English (or any other language for that matter). In addition you have the “cyrillic challenge” which complicates even simple tasks, like ordering a happy meal. though I can’t recommend happy meals the challenge of not being able to read combined with not being able explain the simplest things makes Moscow a challenging and without doubt for some at time frustrating city to visit.

My Russian colleagues shared with me that you shouldn’t think Moscow is like the rest of the country – or vice versa.

So, if that’s correct then the rest of Russia must have far, far to go… My Moscow experience was not unlike visiting Beijing a few years except that Moscow has more of all the well-known mainstream brands – both b2b and b2c. people shouldn’t kid themselves when deciding for a short og longterm venture in Moscow.

There’s still quite some cultural distance for them to cover – and for the rest of us.

Cyrillic Challenges

I’ve spent the better half of the evening trying to navigate through Moscow using the cyrillic alphabet. Tomorow’s a normal working day here and so I’ve thrown the towel in the ring at about 2200 hrs. a taxi is speeding me through Moscow to what I hope is my hotel. tomorrow there is another day where I can try myself on navigation.

Without Google and the internet I would never have gotten this far. Google maps have provided directions. Wikitravel has provided all the info on Moscow and it still wasn’t enough to get me all the way to the hotel on my own steam. Without all of the above, though, I would have had to take the over-priced taxis from the airport to the hotel.

I wonder how I’ll get to the office tomorow…

Arrived in the Caribbean

Arrived in the Caribbean, actually just now trying out this posting system for the first time from the tytnii phone using SharpMT. We’ve arrived in good condition to spend a couple of weeks in the Dominican Republic (DR). MartinAir’s “comfort” service was really worth the extra money… It’s now 6;40 in the morning and we just CAN’T sleep any longer. Guess we’ll get over the jetlag during today.

Lonely Planet Bluelist

Lonely Planet Bluelist
Originally uploaded by gubbex.

Grrrrreeeeaaaaatt!!! The people at Lonely Planet have come out with a BLUELIST – essentially with great help from their readers all over the World. And what are their (indirect) comments on our trips?:

China 2005 – on the Great Wall:
“The touristed parts of Badaling are not recommended; try instead a walk from Simatai to Jinshanling.”
Thailand 2006 – on the markets of Chiang Mai:
#3 in the Category: Greatest Markets
“The Chiang Mai market opens after sundown and it’s ‘Bargain City’. Fancy a fake Rolex? Get it here. Pirate DVDs? You got it. Fabrics, silks, sunglasses, gems…mmm, it’s all here, as are swords and chicken feet… The centrepiece is the Night Bazaar Building, three floors of all this and more. Bargain for all you’re worth for a rollicking good time.”

Tanzania 2006 – on Jambiani Beach:
#3 in the Category: Best Beaches to Swing a Hammock
“Here’s the beach that Time forgot, where men in fishing dhows set sail at sunset for the reefs, women gather seaweed daily, and people like you constantly boil to a crisp under the baking sun. There’s not much to do except loll about and crack open a few coconuts.”

In other words: Been there, done that. The Bluelist remains a very interesting book about many things to do all over the world! Domain Name Birthday

Today is celebrating it’s 7 years birthday. Originally registered in 1999, having had 3 different designs throughout those years, it’s been hosted in Denmark and Luxembourg by a handful of different companies, and is currently administrated out of Netherlands.

Furthermore it has transformed and followed web culture forward (as much as a family site can find resources to do), with e-mail to around 20 individuals named Thusgaard, and meanwhile with relatively independent blogs attached to it.

It’s a fairly international site with many participants either active or in the background and promising posts across a multitude of topics.

Here’s to 7 more great years – Happy Birthday !!!

[tags]Thusgaard, Blog, Website, Webdesign, Denmark, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Hosting, E-mail [/tags]

110.000 Kms by Bicycle in 6 Years

In 1997 Herb van Drongelen went on a daring adventure. He took his bike down the narrow stairs of his Amsterdam home and started 6 years of cycling around the World.

Earlier today we went to De Cantine in Amsterdam to see his exhibition. Just an outstanding, fantastic, fascinating exhibition.

[tags]Herb van Drongelen, Cycling, Travel, Adventure, Around the World[/tags]