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Archive for February, 2011

You probably didn’t notice…

February 18th, 2011 No comments

… but I changed the title and tag line for this blog. There are two primary reasons for this, one personal and one professional.

First the personal. I’ve decided to expand the scope from just work to a few choice personal items. The one that you’ll see the most of for the next several months is related to the Tough Mudder New England, a challenge I’ve taken on to raise money for Children’s Hospital Boston. I may throw in an article on other topics here and there as well, so some of the posts will be less about BPM and Case Management and more about life in general. And so, the randomness of the blog drives the title to a degree (because the posts will occasionally be sort of random).

On the work front, I chose the title “Practically Unpredictable” because it reflects my belief that many of the core business processes we deal with day-in and day-out are just about always unpredictable. So rather than strictly taking about process improvement, I though the title should reflect the biggest challenges we face in business.

So there you have it. Hope you enjoy the expanded content and that you aren’t chased away by the random topics here and there. Thanks for reading!

Categories: Miscellaneous

Running the Gauntlet

February 18th, 2011 No comments

I’ve been pretty good about training this first week. The program I follow starts on Mondays because most marathons are run on Sunday. Where I’m running the Tough Mudder on a Saturday, I moved the start back to Sunday, so I effectively ‘start’ my week with a long run and then do medium length runs, cross training and strength training during the week. So this week I ran 4 miles on Sunday (long run for the week), stretched on Monday, and then just under and over 3 miles on Tuesday and Thursday respectively. I was supposed to do a cross-training day on Wednesday but work and contractors in the house made that easily skippable (notice I didn’t say impossible, I just got lazy).

So what, you might ask, does this have to do with the title of the blog posting? Well, one of the obstacles I face is called the Gauntlet. You can see all the obstacles on the course map, but I thought I’d describe a couple of them as I trained.

The Gauntlet reads as “Prepare to feel like you’re at a South American political demonstration as you get high pressure hosed from both sides as you run through Mount Snow’s half pipe.” For those of you who haven’t been skiing or snowboarding recently, picture a pipe, cut in half, and laid down the slope of the hill with the U facing upwards. It’s used by snowboarders and skiers to perform insane tricks at high velocity. The one I’m most familiar with at Loon Mountain in NH is about 15′ high on the sides, probably 60′ across, and several hundred feet long. Which means I’ll be running through a giant trench, probably uphill, while sadistic volunteers hose me down with fire hoses. Clearly I’m going to want to get out of there as fast as possible (although there’s more obstacles after that so why rush to the next?!?!) To make matters worse, this particular one is nearer to the end, so I should be good and exhausted by the time I get there, making it damn near impossible to get through this in a timely fashion.

Dare I say “yay”? So, when I start running during the week, whining about having to get out on the road, I think back to the Gauntlet and realize that I’d better work my tail off because I have a lot of endurance to build up. Otherwise I might get stuck in South America….

Categories: Charity

Training begins in earnest

February 15th, 2011 No comments

Running up a hill, small by comparison to the one I’ll be running up on May 7th, wind roaring like a freight train, my light running jacket snapping in the wind like the stars and stripes, I wonder to myself “why am I doing this?!” I’m gasping for air through the neck / face warmer I wear snowboarding because it’s only 25F and that’s before the windchill sets in. Oh, and I feel like I’m going to toss my cookies on this very short three-mile run.

I’m a cigar-smokin’, vodka drinkin’, motorcycle ridin’, software geek. I’m not a runner. By any stretch. Forget that I’ve run two marathons, I’m not built for this. At least that’s what’s going through my mind in the moment. But then I think back to how lucky I was that Children’s Hospital was around, and to what an absolutely amazing experience the NYC Marathon was in 2007, and I gradually re-focus on the end goal, running 10 miles and completing 22 obstacles at the Tough Mudder New England at Mount Snow in an effort to raise some money for Children’s.

I’ve trained in fits and starts over the past couple months since I signed up in November, but this week I finally got a schedule together and have started running regularly. Ok, so two days in the first week doesn’t quite classify as running regularly, but really, I will. And so, as I promised, I’m going to share some of my training thoughts here on the blog. Check back here regularly to see what I’m doing (and feel free to comment when I’m not doing enough).

And finally, if you can spare a couple dollars, head on over to my fundraising page here. Thanks to those of you who’ve already contributed we’re at $650 on a $2500 goal. I greatly appreciate all of your generosity.

Categories: Charity