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Always Keep Your Resume Up To Date

Drop off your "resume"

Originally uploaded by Kristin

My monthly reminder to update my resume just triggered in my to-do list and I thought this was a good tip to share with all of you. Whether you are in the job market or not, you should have a process in place keep your resume current to within a few months. Why? Most of us are terrible at remembering details about what we have accomplished in the past. When you are suddenly thrown into the job market, you need to accurately market your knowledge, skills and abilities to attract the best employers and command the highest salaries.

At the time I joined McKesson, I was a passive job seeker. I had my resume in place, more or less. But it did not thoroughly capture my skills. Why? Because I only updated it once a year. For example, in December 2003 I updated it, and did not touch it again until the following December. I did not capture that I worked on a piece of a Partner Reporting system that used Crystal Reports Enterprise (a piece now part of Business Objects Enterprise) that was exposed using a custom Java front-end. I was only reminded of this work once I was put on a similar (albeit MUCH LARGER) enterprise reporting project. Some projects that I look back on seem insignificant or simple, but in some cases that is due to the work I did to simplify those projects and make them successful. These are the things employers are looking for and can affect the salary you command in the marketplace.

My point here is that I may have missed opportunities based on not having documented that project, the experience I gained, and the technologies involved. It is better to have a comprehensive list of projects and technologies that you can later skinny down to customize for a particular posting than to have a fairly blank slate of “responsible for this” and “worked on that”. 

Today, I will update my resume to reflect work on an Internet Explorer custom toolbar and Browser Helper Object that I have worked off and on for the past 6 months to get into a production ready state. You should set aside time on your calendar in the next week (and at least quarterly from here on out) to update yours.

A New Beginning

Sunrise Over Lake Lanier
Originally uploaded by Iron Mike Schubert

Today marked a new beginning, albeit a short one, in my quest to tame the iron-distance triathlon. In 4 weeks, I will take on the distance again at the Great Floridian Triathlon in Clermont, Florida. The past two weeks were about recovery. This week and next week are about building to a new peak. The following two weeks will be tapering.

Today I started off my new beginning by visiting a different gym. One of the beautiful parts of having memberships with Lifetime Fitness and the YMCA of Metro Atlanta is having 6 different gyms to choose from in which to workout. The Y keeps their pools untolerably hot, so I chose to go to Lifetime Fitness in Johns Creek. I was rewarded with a clean gym, crystal clear pool, and plenty of lockers. This is in stark contrast to the condition at the Alpharetta Lifetime. The Johns Creek location is practically a 180 in terms of floor plan when compared to Alpharetta. When I went looking for something, it was virtually in a mirror image of the Alpharetta location. Definitely weird and mentally challenging at 5 a.m.!!

All told, I was able to swim an hour and lift weights for a little over 30 minutes. For lunch, i went to the Alpharetta Lifetime Fitness and got in a roughly 3.5 mile run. At one point this morning, I thought I was being hard on that gym and was just biased toward the Johns Creek location because I had not been there before. After running and showering I realized that my assessment of the facility was spot on. I will now be doing my early morning workouts at Johns Creek whenever practical.

P.S. I drove by the Suwanee Greenway in hopes of getting a good picture of the flooding I reported on yesterday. The waters had receded tremendously and the trail, at least near Martin Farm Rd looked fairly passable, thus I did not get any photographs. Hopefully we will not see any more flooding like that!

Short Run Today

I actually have no idea how far I ran today. The Suwanee Greenway was still flooded, although the creek was mostly back within its banks. There weren’t very many folks out there, but I guess they got the memo. I’m fortunate to not have had my home affected by all the rain and flooding of the past week. My biggest problem is a yard that has gone 3 weeks without mowing now. Hopefully they neighbors understand but if not – to heck with them.

Training starts back in earnest tomorrow. I can’t wait! I need to get in the pool for breakfast and do an easy 3.5 mile run at lunch. For now, I need to turn off the football game and go to sleep!

Ironman Wisconsin – Looking Back

Tomorrow marks 2 weeks since the event. I’ve recovered to 90-95% or so and am easing back into training. Honestly, training starts in earnest on Monday for 2 straight weeks, then I’ll begin tapering for the Great Floridian Iron Distance Triathlon. Yes – I am double dipping this year, and they are only 6 weeks apart.

Many of you commented offline (why do I bother having a comments section on this site) that I didn’t sound excited and happy in my race reports. Trust me – I had a blast and am very proud of what I accomplished. But objectively, I didn’t accomplish all of my goals. Work was a large factor in that. I received high honors and a promotion at work, my mother passed away in May, and those two major events affected my ability to train and nourish my body in the way I would’ve liked.

Every race is an opportunity to test myself and learn my limits. Every race is an opportunity to do the simplest things in life that many others cannot do. Every race is an opportunity to display my competitive spirit, my unwillingness to quit, and my ability to push through adversity to achieve positive outcomes.

Swim, Bike, Run. It all seems so simple and yet I am extremely happy and thankful that I am able to train and compete.

2009 Ironman Wisconsin Race Report – Bike 112 Miles

Mike on the Bike Course
Originally uploaded by Mike’s Adventures

The Wisconsin bike course is fairly challenging. Comparing the elevation profile to Lake Placid lulled me into a false sense of confidence. I handled Placid without problem and figured Wisconsin would be easier.

It started down the “helix”, the spiral down from the top level of the parking deck, and headed out on John Nolen Rd. The spiral was kinda dizzying, especially since I had been in the water so long, but eventually I settled in and life was good. Once I hit the 20 minute mark, I started taking in calories (water only for the 1st 20 minutes) and I was feeling great.

Miles 43/88 mark the beginning of “the hills” on the course, just past the section I photographed shown here. It was a Tour de France type setting with spectators lining the climb and cheering you the way up. The next few miles were somewhat challenging, but then I hit Verona, the crowds, and the start of the second loop.

Then it hit me. I was getting a migraine. I’ve gotten migraines after hard days of training and racing, but NEVER DURING. Damn. I pressed on, enjoying the day, the sun and the course. To add insult to injury, I started cramping up during the 2nd loop. I was taking in plenty of fluids, but my hamstrings and quads started cramping up, especially when I went through the hills the 2nd time at mile 88. Eventually I made my way out and back to transition.

So what made the bike course tough? Some say it’s that every 5 minutes you’re doing something different. Others say it’s the hills. I fall in the 2nd camp, but not for the same reasons. The roads with hills were not long, or high, but steep. There’s the rub – a climb with a steep grade. Additionally, there were places on the course where you would turn and immediately be climbing. Turns take speed away – and there are plenty of turns on this course, compared to Lake Placid where you only have 12 turns over the whole course. Turning into a climb knocks you down even more.

So in short, my bike ride was dominated by a migraine, cramps, a lot of turning, and some steep grades. I’m happy with it overall and would not change anything I did. It is what it is.

Next up – how the heck am I going to get through the marathon? Stay tuned!