Archive for Insee Paris Club

semi-marathon d’Argentan [1:27:27, 22/356, 2/65]

Posted in Kids, Running, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , on October 2, 2017 by xi'an

As a new anniversary of the beginning of this ‘og, here comes and goes my yearly half-marathon in Argentan, Normandy, which was the 33rd edition of the race and my 19th participation there…

“Ah, le fameux Robert de l’INSEE qui vient faire chier chaque année!”

This was not one of my best races, by far, and the [fake] news that this was going to be the last edition did not help. There were fewer runners than in the earlier races, meaning no protection on most of the route from what seemed like a constant headwind, as I ran by myself from the third kilometre. And I was tired from too much training (and not enough sleeping) the past week in Warwick. Or not enough training the previous week in Vienna. Anyway, this was not a great race and the local V2 [Grand Master] runner who greeted me with the above good-natured apostrophe when I passed him on the second km ended up one minute ahead of me. I could have even stopped at mid-race, were it not for a deficient watch operation, that kept me thinking I could keep with my earlier time [3:39 – 3:50 – 3:59 – 3:53 – 4:00 – 4:28 – 4:11 – 4:06 – 4:04 – 4:07 – 4:24 – 4:39 – 4:01 – 4:12 – 4:05 – 4:14 – 4:03 – 4:16 – 4:17 – 3:58 – 0:25] till the finish line when I found a 4mn difference with the official time! Despite the low participation of 356 runners, and with the support of runners from England, the town of Argentan has vowed to keep the race on for next years, calling for volunteers to man the route and the arrival hall. Till next time, then, hopefully!

end of a long era [1982-2017]

Posted in Books, pictures, Running, University life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on May 23, 2017 by xi'an

This afternoon I went to CREST to empty my office there from books and a few papers (like the original manuscript version of Monte Carlo Statistical Methods). This is because the research centre, along with the ENSAE graduate school (my Alma mater), is moving to a new building on the Saclay plateau, next to École Polytechnique. As part of this ambitious migration of engineering schools from downtown Paris to a brand new campus there. Without getting sentimental about this move, it means leaving the INSEE building in Malakoff, on the outskirts of downtown Paris, which has been an enjoyable part of my student and then academic life from 1982 till now. And also leaving the INSEE Paris Club runners! (I am quite uncertain about being as active at the new location, if only because going there by bike is a bit more of a challenge. To be addressed anyway!) And I left behind my accumulation of conference badges (although I should try to recycle them for the incoming BNP 11 in Paris!).

Why Runners Get Slower With Age

Posted in Kids, Running, Travel with tags , , , , , , on September 16, 2015 by xi'an

Argentan, Apr. 17, 2011“The differences were striking. With each passing decade, the runners’ stride length and preferred speed dropped by about 20 percent.”

This morning at breakfast I read this New York Times article on the impact of age on running abilities. The perfect article to get me in the right post-birthday mood! The results of a physiological study reported in this article are not crystal-clear, but they primarily show that “older runners used their ankle muscles less but not other muscles more.”  A point on which I have no opinion, although I think I now run more from the front of my feet than I used to run, if the imposition on my running shoes is informative: the sole under the big toe is the first part to wear out! Then, at lunch, I went to train with my friends of the Insee Paris Club on 1km splits, with a good soul playing the pacemaker on the last lap. And helping me to achieve an average 3:31 average I was not expecting! Too bad I only have one serious training left before the traditional Argentan half-marathon, early October…

41ièmes Foulées de Malakoff [5k, 7⁰C, 18:40, 40th & 2nd V2]

Posted in Running with tags , , , , on February 7, 2015 by xi'an

[Warning: post of limited interest to most, about a local race I ran for another year!]

Once more, I managed to run my annual 5k in Malakof. And once again being (barely) there on the day of the race. Having landed a few hours earlier from Birmingham. Due to traffic and road closures, I arrived very later in Malakoff and could not warm up as usual, or even squeeze to the first rows on the starting line. Given those handicaps, I still managed in getting close to my best time of last year (18:40 vs. 18:36). I alas finished second in my V2 category, just a few meters behind the first V2 and definitely catching up on him! My INSEE Paris Club team won the company challenge for yet another year. Repeating a pattern of now many years.

40ièmes Foulées de Malakoff [5k, 7⁰C, 18:36, 13th & 1st V2]

Posted in Kids, Running with tags , , , , on February 5, 2014 by xi'an

(Warning: post of limited interest to anyone there, as I am posting about a local race I ran!)

Once more, I managed to run my annual 5k in Malakoff, having recovered from my Chamonix flu earlier and better than last year. And being (barely) around on the day of the race. I actually succeeded in achieving my best time over several years (3:41-3:47-3:41-3:43-3:43, for a total time of 18:36.) I also finished first in my V2 category, a feat I was far from expecting. The light training last week in Warwick eventually did help for such a short distance at a faster pace! And my INSEE Paris Club team won the company challenge for yet another year. Repeating last year setting, I was furthermore running the race with my daughter, who ended third ex-aequo with a friend. 

Here is a picture of the race start, already in the Lenin stadium (Malakoff may be the last town in France to enjoy a Lenin stadium!), but before WWII…

39ièmes Foulées de Malakoff

Posted in Running with tags , , , , on February 17, 2013 by xi'an

I ran my annual 5k in Malakoff on Saturday, recovering from my flu in a much milder climate than last year. Thanks to the flu, I was out of breath after the first K and did poorly (3:38-3:58-3:53-4:00-3:54, ending in 19:26…) I still finished second in my V2 category. This was the first time I was running a race with my daughter, who also finished second (and last!) in her category. (It was about 15 degrees (C) warmer than last year and I think it helped towards fighting the leftovers of the flu! The radio was playing the 6th Brandenburg concerto again, on the way back. Groundhog Day syndroms…?!)

cross de Bercy 2012 [5k, 19:01, 9th &1st v2]

Posted in Running, University life with tags , , , , , , on June 7, 2012 by xi'an

(Warning: not much of interest to anyone there, as I am posting about a local race I ran!)

Today, I ran my annual Ministry of Finances race. This year, I had the choice between 5km and 10km, so I picked 5km if only because I dislike running two identical loops (and also because I am running a 10km on Sunday in Caen). I was in reasonable shape so managed to get to the head of the race at the start, avoiding the crowd in the narrow paths of Bois de Vincennes and stuck to my 8th position for most of the race, until I got passed by the female winner close to the 4th k, and I ended up first in my category in a rather slow 19:01. So I brought back to the office a rather large (and necessarily ugly) cup… This year I did not even bother to take split times at each km tag as I knew they were most unreliable: for instance, I did 3:09-6:49-10:20 for the three first ones. Anyway, this was a rather pleasant race in a cool weather and prior to a strong rain shower that would have left us drenched. My INSEE Paris Club running team managed to get 5 first positions (out of 16) and 10 cups out of the 48 cups delivered for the event! (As in the past years I then had to rush from the stadium to attend a seminar at CREST, where I must acknowledge my attention span varied at times…)