Monday, December 20, 2010

Motivation Monday

Well back again for another Monday pep talk. I could really use one right now. I have been sick for a week and can't see it getting much better. I have been unable to do anything workout related and besides being sick, I am frustrated and feeling fat.
So here's to a recovery of sorts and I want to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!!!
Now on with some Motivation.....

It requires more courage to suffer than to die.  - Napolean Bonaparte

What worries you, masters you.   - Haddon W. Robinson

What great thing would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?  - Robert Schuller

Monday, December 13, 2010

Motivation Monday

I know everyone is looking forward to my Motivation Mondays so here is another installment- if you haven't noticed, December's motivation is about "COURAGE".

"Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened."- Billy Graham

"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear."- Ambrose Redmoon

"Everyone has talent. What is rare is the courage to follow that talent to the dark place where it leads."- Erica Jong

And lastly-
"If you're careful enough, nothing bad or good will ever happen to you." -Ashleigh Brilliant

Nice Saturday stroll

Got out on a great little trail run on Saturday with Jim, Jon, Bj and Forest. Weather was great and the trail was fantastic. Ran the BST north of Rainbow for a round trip total of 11 miles. Bj and Jon set the pace and I just tried to keep up. Major problem going on is a sore groin. I think I tweaked it a few weeks back playing indoor soccer and it just hasn't come around. The first 4-5 miles it wasn't bad but after 7 miles it got tough. Sore and tight! Not sure what to do at this point. I feel good and want to keep my training going so I don't have to start over but not sure how long I need to heal. I definitely don't want this thing to linger. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Legs are feeling strong but the groin is slowing me down.
So I started a new idea for Mondays- Motivation Monday. This is actually more for me than anything. I am STILL struggling with my DNF at the Swancrest 100 way back in July. I really can't shake it and it feels like this added weight on my shoulders- and I really can't afford more added weight. I never thought it would be so challenging mentally to get over it. I am finding it hard not to think about on my runs. I want to use it for motivation but now it appears it is quite the opposite.
Update: my diet and core training is going well. I have lost 15 pounds and feel stronger in the core. This is a good mental boost. I do the cooking and being on a diet my family at times gets short changed on some good chow, the other night y daughter said to me "Dad- we are not on diets." I told her that soon as I lost my winter weight I would change it a bit for them (we are all eating healthy now). She said- " Dad it is barely winter and you are not gaining winter weight," my response- "Honey I am talking about losing my winter weight from 2007 still."

Monday, December 6, 2010

2011 and the big 4-0

So, I am hoping for a little help/inspiration/idea for 2011. I want to do something cool/different for my 40th b-day. The optimal idea would be run the Hardrock 100 but I did not do a qualifier last year so that is my bad and bums me out- big time (not that I would have gotten in or finished).
So that leaves me to find something to commemorate the day. My birthday in July 9th and falls on a Saturday so that could make things easier. I have a few ideas and hoping that if anyone does in fact read this they could throw out some ideas. I would like it running based since that's what I enjoy but it is no way tied down to that.
Well, here are just a few ideas: (please chime in)-
- Do the Zion Traverse
- Go to Hardrock and pace
- Run through the Uinta mtns...i.e Kings Peak, etc
- Find a 100 mile trail race
- Just sleep in (who am I kidding)
- Drink 40 beers
- Run 40 miles somewhere (this is done all the time)
These are a few to get things rolling.

Motivation Monday

Well it's been another week and time for Motivation Monday. Last week I got in some quality miles and stayed true to my diet and workout plans. Its been about 6 weeks and I am really starting to notice a difference. Gearing up for 2011 and really keeping my fingers crossed for a birth into the Wasatch 100!!!!
Enough about you go!

I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you're licked before you begin, but you begin anyway and see it through no matter what.- Harper Lee in To Kill a Mockingbird (my favorite all time book by the way)

Courage is very important. Like a muscle, it is strengthened by use.- Ruth Gordon

And to finish this week off.....
Courage is the magic that turns dreams into reality.  - Richter Abend

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Island Run

Well I got out on the island today- Antelope Island. Once a month there is a training run for the Buffalo Run and today was 13 miles. We ran from the start/finish and did the White Rock loop then after that we went north. This was my first time going north on the island and I loved the trail!!! We were able to see buffalo, huge deer and coyotes. The weather was decent and there was a solid group of about 12 people.
All in all it was a nice 13 mile run with a little soreness. I have been playing some indoor soccer and aggravated the groin. This run was definitely testing it. Won't be playing this week to rest the groin but plan on getting in quite a few more miles for the week.
It felt great to get back out and put in some quality miles with quality people. I am feeling pretty good heading into 2011. Losing some damn weight (finally) and gettting stronger.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Motivation Monday

Back at it for week #2. I have got some decent running in but my focus is still losing a little weight and working on core and strength. Feeling pretty good so far and I will be increasing mileage.
Here is some more motivation:
Cowards die many times before their deaths. The valiant never taste death but once.- Julius Caesar
Either life entails courage, or it ceases to be life.- E.M. Forster
Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point.- C.S. Lewis
and now a favorite of mine- it means many things in such a small little bombshell.
- Take chances!- B. Fish

There you have it for your motivation Monday. Enjoy!!!!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Motivation Monday

A new feature will be launched right here every Monday. Winter is tough to stay motivated for me when it comes to running. I would rather be skiing, sledding, making a snowman, playing Wii and hanging out with my family rather than being on a treadmill or outside in frigid temps. So here is my own attempt to stay motivated for the winter months.
If you have some, leave a comment.
From Wikipedia:

Motivation- is the driving force which causes us to achieve goals. Motivation is said to be intrinsic or extrinsic. The term is generally used for humans but, theoretically, it can also be used to describe the causes for animal behavior as well.

So let it begin............
"You'll never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have." -Unknown
"Don't defer your life, chase your passions" -Unknown
"Push your limits" -Unknown
"No excuses, no regrets, Leave Nothing" - Manners

Just a sampling

Monday, November 15, 2010

Back to bloggin'

Who would have thought it would be so tough to keep up on a blog? Not me. Not enough hours in the day or maybe not enough interesting stuff to write about. Starting to put my race schedule together (on the right side here) for 2011 and set some goals. Had a great summer of taking up Race Directing and volunteering at local events and some time in between for running.
Got out yesterday for a nice 11 mile run in the rain and snow. Still dirt beneath the feet but can see the snow taking over up high. I am going to try and get out on a few more dirt runs then hit the slopes and throw on the yaktrax for some running. Got a good thing going and just want to keep it up.
Next race on tap will be the Moab Red Hot 50k- great way to break out of town to some red rocks in February.
See you on the trails!

Monday, September 13, 2010

A little mojo can go along way...I hope!

Well, I didn't get to pace at the Wasatch 100 over the weekend but that's okay. I had the opportunity to hang out at Lamb's Aid Station for a few hours and then go to the finish. Saw lots of friends and made a few more. Most importantly though I got that feeling back. It wasn't anything I did- at least that day. As I was sitting their at the finish with my wife and 5 year old daughter Aspen, I had lots of emotions and memories flooding my mind. It was their 2 years ago I finished my first and only 100 miler. It really felt like yesterday. Those amazing athletes helped me get it back. From overall winner Nick Clark (Team PI-Smith- had to throw that in, Darcy won for the women's- Team PI-Smith too- SWEEP!) to the individuals who dnf'd. The courage it takes to compete in a 100 miler is really the key. As John Wayne put it- "Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway." The relationships formed on the trail, that's what it is about for so many. I know I have got to know some of the better people in my life through trail running. So as I sat watching and observing, talking to friends and runners alike- I got that itch to do run. Not just go out for a nice run but really RUN!
So Sunday morning I hit the trail with Jim Skaggs and we went for a 8 mile trail run nice and early. I felt great! Out of shape a bit but great none the less. So I hope I can ride this good feeling for awhile. Gonna take a little time to get back into it but that's okay by me.
Congrats to all those at the Wasatch 100 this weekend and thanks!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Wasatch 100 2010

Today kicks off the Wasatch 100 and I have to admit- I am a little jealous I am not running it. This was my first 100 miler 2 years ago. I got the finish- thanks to my friend Scott Jaime-  but it wasn't pretty. Wasatch will always hold a firm place in my running resume. It was my first 100 and it is in my backyard. I will do it again one day but I wanted to run a few other 100's first. I tried Swancrest this year and well- that didn't work out at all. Since that dreary day (and a half) I can honestly say I haven't had that "spunk" to really run. I have ran a couple races and went on some great training runs but I just don't feel back. I have definitely lost some fitness and even my wife is hounding me to run- I know crazy right?
Well today I get the privilege of pacing from Lamb's Canyon to Brighton (22ish miles). I paced a good portion of this last year for Christian Johnson and this year I get to pace Kelly Bradbury.
So, when I woke up this morning a weird thing happened for me- I was looking forward and excited to run. I actually have been feeling butterflies and I am not even racing. Maybe this is a sign of things turning around or maybe it is a sign of a bad dinner last night. I really hope things are turning cause I miss time on the trails with my friends and those special runs solo. I love running in the fall so today will tell me a lot. I never thought that a DNF would turn me like this. I thought I would be more driven and determined but I haven't had that emotion.
Well, here is to the Wasatch 100- CHEERS! Good Luck to all my friends running- here is to all of your success, whatever that might be.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Trying to get back on the horse

Well, it has been a rough few weeks since the DNF in Montana. I took a few days off to get feeling better physically but mentally isn't doing as well. I have been training and getting some good running in as well as race directing. Last week I ran the Skyline Marathon. It is a great first year trail race on some nice singletrack. I was hoping that the race would get my engine sparking again but still nothing. The run went well and I actually felt pretty decent. I tried to push in a few spots I normally would have taken it easy on. I thought this would help determine the rest of my year for racing. The plan was to run the GTR 50 then hit the Bear 100 for some redemption and get that taste of DNF out of my mouth, then hit the Mtn View Trail 1/2 and finish with the inagural 100k on Antelope Island. After the race last weekend I came away with= "I am done for the year- racing/races." Just don't have that fire that get me excited to test myself. Part of me thinks if I do the Bear (which I have wanted to do now for 3 years) and fail again then I may never get back on the horse. The Swancrest 100 really took something out of me/from me. I can't put a finger on it and I know it "happens to everyone" but damn!
So as I sit here- I am thinking of doing the GTR Trail Marathon and go from there. I really do want to run the Bear but really don't have any confidence at all. I am also hoping that getting this on paper/computer will help me deal with it better and rally a bit.
Funny thing is my wife and kids really want me to run the Bear. How crazy is that??? I am always trying to sell the races to them and it's work but not this happened in Montana or was it the Twilight Zone!?

Monday, August 2, 2010

SwanCrest 100 Report- DNF

I am going with 2 versions of the Swan Crest 100 race report. One will be short and sweet and the second will be longer with some details.

Report #1- Short and Sweet

I DNF’d at mile 68.7. No injuries, no bears- just feel like shit now mentally, not too bad physically.

Report #2- Long with some details.

First and foremost I can’t say enough about what Brad and the Swan Crest gang pulled off for their first year. This was a truly amazing event and experience. Great time had by all and came away with a few more trail friends. In my opinion this is a must do race.

To the race- the pre race meeting took place at Hammer Nutrition headquarters in Whitefish, MT. From the check in you could see the Swan Crest mountain range. The basic overview- “look down there as far as you can see then follow the ridgeline to here- that’s pretty much it- 100 miles.” Ya right! Don’t forget to go up then down then up then down then over some trees then under some trees the around some trees and don’t forget that the huckleberries are starting to come on so bears are an issue. Hmmm, easy enough? After watching the “what to do if Bears attack” video, we mingled a bit then left to get some shut eye.

Woke up at 4 am Friday morning (thank Brad the RD for letting me crash on his floor) in order to get ready to meet the shuttle bus to the start an hour away in Swan Crest. Loaded the Hammer Nutrition van with about 10 other suckers and we were off. As we took the drive it was fun to hear so many ultra stories from around the country. Out of the 10 runners in the van I believe there were 6 states represented. Sure made me even more intimidated hearing all the experience knowing this was my 2nd 100 ever- Wasatch 2008 as the first. The bus unloaded and we had about 30 minutes until the start. There were 44 runners in the inaugural race and I felt very lucky to be one of them. As the race started we headed out for a few miles on a road before we took a turn up an old dirt road. Unbeknownst to me this was about the only true runable section with any distance to think of. After about 10 miles we can to the first aid station and I was feeling pretty good. It was early but I just felt great. After we left there we had about 9 miles to Napa Point Aid Station through some crazy and fun trail/bushwhacking. The single-track started and it was gorgeous! Take away the stinging nettle and the fact the growth was head high and you couldn’t see your feet- this was great. We were warned that this section was overgrown and to be on the lookout for bears. After about 100 yards we came across our first bear crap on the day- right in the middle of the trail. Wow, starting to hit home now. After we “saw a clearing” I thought we might be able to push a bit but no dice. There was at least one mile of avalanche debris and it was tough. There was no trail to speak of and you literally had to hop over, on and around some crazy intense deadfall. When we finally left the debris field I notice my bib number was ripped clean off my shorts. We got back to a trail and headed up which would turn into a common theme for the day. More miles and more bear scats latter we found our way to Napa Point. There would be a small out and back section here to get us on our way for the next 25 miles before another aid station. Going into Napa Point I was about 10 or 11 back from the front and still feeling pretty good but like the saying goes- “if you are feeling good in an ultra- don’t worry it will change soon enough” and it did!

The next 25 miles pretty much set the tone for the rest of my race. We were essentially on the ridgeline of the mountains and it was hot. When we passed through a burn section the temps seem to rise by 10 degrees. We came upon the first clear run off and I filled up my pack and bottle and trekked forward. I thought if I keep hitting these until Six Mile AS (#3) then I would be in great shape but after a while I started to realize that I was going to be in trouble with my hydration unless we found another creek soon. I didn’t find one soon enough and I was dry! Nothing for almost 2 hours. No water, gel, calories, food, electrolytes…AN YTHING! I could feel the energy slowly dwindle and my mouth and throat got really dry. As people passed they too were dry and we shared some glares but we knew there was nothing we could do but hope for a creek. I started to cramp everywhere. By the time we hit the next creek for water I was in a bad place. I just kept one foot in front of the other and finally made it to Six Mile. Once there I got some coke and tried to find something to eat but my stomach didn’t want anything. I sat for about 20 minutes trying to get my wits and I must say without a few individuals from the volunteer crew this stop may have lasted a lot longer. From here we had to go straight up to a peak 1.5 mile away and grab a playing card and jet back down. The way up was not bad and once we hit the top, I got an instance shot of adrenaline. The views were incredible! I grabbed my 8 of hearts and hauled ass back to the aid station. I made some good time and before I knew it I was at the aid station and ready to leave before dark. I caught up with another guy and we slowly plodded to Quintokken AS. It was starting to get dark and the footing was getting sketchy. We made a turn down a long trail with some overgrowth and we say a shadow coming towards us. We both stopped and went for the bear spray. As the figure got closer we started making noise and yelling but we got no response- then I heard a familiar sound of trekking poles. It was a runner who had been lost for a couples hours with no water and no light source. He was an older gentleman and he was in bad shape. He had no idea where he was and was heading the wrong way. He wanted to go back to the last aid station since he said he missed it but with his condition he wasn’t going to make it in the dark. I told him to come with us to AS #5 and not to worry about the race. He reluctantly agreed so I handed him my headlamp and pulled out a small handheld flashlight for me. This took a long time. It was hard to keep him moving and making sure he got across a couple river crossing. When we hit the aid station, Brad the RD was there so I told him about the situation. Due to all the circumstances they made sure he didn’t go any farther and his race was done. I sat with him at the fire to make sure he was okay and we exchanged some very kind words. It was great to see him the next day and he even introduced me to his daughter and granddaughter who were there. At AS #5 I met back up with Jim and he waited for me to get some food and we headed out for the next 16 miles in the dark. This was pretty slow and go section, we stopped a few times to enjoy the night and even caught about 10 minutes of shut eye. It was great to be back on the trail with a familiar and coherent person. A few miles out of Broken Leg aid station we heard a large crashing in the bush and we both froze. Not sure what it was I made more noise and we slowly and cautiously kept going in the dark. We finally hit Broken Leg and we were done. We probably wouldn’t have made the next cut off and we both agreed that going 5 more miles to Strawberry was not the right choice. I couldn’t believe I just DNF’d. As disappointed as I was I had no idea it would only get worse. We sat in the aid station for about an hour before we got a ride to the finish. After a shower and seeing the sun, things started to set in. As I watched the few finishers come across- 20 out of 44 finished, I was starting to get more and more disappointed. I was hesitant to call my wife and kids since I felt I failed and let them down. Even as I write this and relive those moments, I am disappointed. 68.7 miles out of 100 wasn’t my goal. No words can explain the race and I am left with some great moments but an empty feeling as well. I know people DNF and many are the ones I look up to in this gig but to finally have it happen to me- that’s different right? Not sure how I am gonna rebound or how long it will take but I know I will be go back next year to see if I can finish that beast. There were many experienced 100 mile runners there and the consensus was pretty much the same- this is one tough son of a bitch. There were some Wasatch finishers there (myself included) and we all seem to think that this was harder. It was remote, you had to take maps, bear spray and be willing to not run most of the course. It didn’t have the elevation as some of those tougher races- about 22,000’ but all you did was go up then go down and repeat…A LOT.

The race and local are beautiful. This race is a true gem and the first 100 miler in Montana. Hats off to everyone there and the local folks were very gracious. This is not a race for everyone and maybe not even me but if you want a true test- this will give it to you.

So bottom line- DNF. No excuses and no blames. I just didn’t get it done. Next up??? Maybe the Grand Teton 50 then shut it down for the year. Thought about doing the Bear but I am thinking I may just pace or crew.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Swan Crest 100 or bust!

So the time is almost here. My 2nd ever 100 mile trail race. I did the Wasatch 100 in 2008 and was put on my knees by course. Luckily for me I had an amazing crew and the best pacer you can find- Mr. Jaime. Looking back now I feel pretty fortunate to have all those people in my corner. It's hard to imagine what Scott went through that LOOOOOOOOONG day on the trail. 60 miles at a turtle pace. I appreciate it even more the more I run. I remember thinking that one day I wanted to try and 100 miler with no crew or pacer just to see if I could do it. forward to NOW!
I was hoping to have another 100 miler or 10 under my belt before I attempted such a thing but circumstances are what they are and going up to Montana I will be going SOLO. If you get a minute, check out the race info HERE. So 100 miles through grizzly bear country solo? I read it and thought what the hell but now I think WTF? Am I an idiot? Well okay, I am but seriously. I need to carry a can of bear spray the entire race, pre- race briefing has a video that is mandatory to watch on what to do in a bear encounter. There are only 49 runners and aide stations spread out -some 25 mile apart. The course markings well, let's say minimal to be nice. It will be an adventure. Am I ready- of course not.
My wife asked me what were my expectations. Well, to live and go under 36 hours. Simple right?
I had a more than tough month of June but July has been great. Being the co-RD for the NUTS races has taken it's toll on me but I still find time to do some nice running. Whatever happens on Friday and Saturday this week will be a great experience and one that will hopefully make me a stronger runner and human being. Maybe it is just what I need to re-charge and re-focus. I am planning on doing the Bear 100 in September so hopefully it will help me for that.
So after all my rambling I can honestly say I am very excited.....nervous....excited......nervous....excited......scared to death!
Whatever I am, one thing is for sure- I am not sane!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Well that's a good 31 miler!

Well I wanted to get in a good run for a b-day gift for myself. The old saying of running your age in miles may be true but I thought with the elevation in this one it was the same- (31 miles + 8500' of climb = 39-  you see 31 +8 in 39). Nailed it! Here is the GPS of the day- BOOM!
So Jim and I started a the North Ogden Divide Parking lot at 6 am for a day of adventure. We left the lot a few minutes after 6 and began. The switchbacks were pretty un-eventful and we just power hiked and walked most of it. I felt pretty good and less labored than years past. This was the first time to the Peak for 2010 with hopefully more to come. A few miles after the switchbacks we were joined by Bj.....Here:

After Bj showed up, Jim and I knew we had to pick up the pace for the fast guy. We got to the base of the peak and made decent time up. We only saw one mountain goat and that was from a distance. When we hit the top there were a couple of people already there- one being Bj's father in law- Forest. He started a bit earlier to meet Bj up there. We then ran towards Willard Peak and Inspiration Point. As we got closer to Willard Peak we started to see all the mountain goats- BAM!
I am thinking we saw close about 50 but there very easily could have been more. They seemed to be everywhere! It was incredible. They are truly magnificent animals. We all stood awe struck and a bit jealous by their mountain skills. We weren't sure where to go from here so we just followed this guy:
He was right on the trail as if to say- "let's go fellas." We made it around one more turn which ended up being exactly 10 miles from the divide. There we turned around- summited BL Peak again and bombed down the parking lot to reload with water.
From the divide parking lot we took off for Lewis Peak. It was getting hot and the climb from the parking lot was actually pretty brutal. I noticed I was sweating like a hog. I stayed on top of the nutrition for the day and felt pretty good. We hit the peak and stayed for a few before starting our journey back down. It was a bit slower for me in a few parts but I managed to rally a little to join the guys for our last little quad buster.
All in all it was an amazing day on the trail. Lots of vert and some quality miles with some quality people. Trail running has been a great hobby/passion since my days on the soccer field. It's personally challenging but can be oh so rewarding. I will probably never be a fast little goat but I look at it this way- If I pay $150 dollar for a 100 mile race and finish in 30 hours and the winner pays $150 and finishes in 20 hours then I paid less per mile...right??? Well, that's how I will look at it for now.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Logan Peak Trail Race

Well, it took awhile but it's time to write up a quick report.
Let's see- I am trying to remember what happened on that day, it's been 10 days or so and I am getting old. Got up really early and met Jim so we could car pool up to Logan. We checked in and I got a good stretch in thanks to Joel. I have been having issues with my lower back again and with this race starting a climb for the first 4+ miles I wanted to get it worked on. Once the race started I just tucked in with Jim and Joel and knew it would be a 6+ hour day. I ran this race a couple years ago and got a time of 6:30. I wasn't sure how today would work out since I used June as a taper month (more on that later). As we went up the grind, I noticed it was a pretty casual pace. I wasn't overly concerned knowing what was in store later on. Once we left the first aid station it opens up abit through the front side of the mountain. This is were I was feeling good. I took off on a pretty good pace and it felt great so I just decided to keep it until it felt labored. Missing SP50 earlier in the month was still in my mind and I knew my training wasn't were it needed to be but I thought this would prove to be a good training run with good vert and good miles. The way up the peak was slow and go with some uphill running here and there but it was too early to take many chances with my fitness. It was a slog up to the peak but once there it was time to do some glissading with snow running mixed in. This felt great and really got my juices flowing. Over the next few miles I passed about 6 or 7 people until we hit the 2nd to last aid station. From here you take a fire road for a few miles then you hit the jackpot. Going across the fire road I felt like crap. I knew I should be running but the legs didn't respond. Once I hit the turn for the downhill I got a bit excited. Downhill doesn't always feel good on the knees and quads but this was some of the prettiest single track there is to offer. I picked up my pace and started to let gravity and beauty take over. Unfortunately this section in short lived and then you start a few minor hills before you wrap around the front side and join back up to the dry creek trail.
The last 4 miles are relentless. It gets pretty technical and you know that walking really isn't an option. I caught up to Jim during this section and ran down before I was rudely sent to the ground by a cow. Yep and damn cow! Out of the corner of my eye (while navigating the jagged rocks on the downhill) a cow appeared out of the bushes and soon as I looked up my toe caught a rock. I was going too fast to catch myself so I had no choice but to give in to gravity again and I hit a rock HARD then slid on my side and back for a few feet before coming to a stop. I assessed the situation as I lay there and I was bruised and cut but never heard a snap so I figure I was good to go. My vest was ripp3ed up and my quad had a gnarly knot in it but considering what could have happened I was pretty pleased. The knot in the quad slowed me a bit but I coasted to the finish in 6:10- good enough for 34th. I was pretty pleased with the time considering all that has been going on. Beat my old time by 20 minutes.
Logan Peak is a fantastic race and Bruce and company do a great job. Definitely a race I expect to go sub 6 on next year.
The last week or so I have gotten in some good mileage and some vertical and things are starting to calm down. Next up is the NUTS 1/2 marathon which I will be RD'ing. Kinda sucks I cant run it. It's a great course.

Friday, June 4, 2010

SP50- Preview....DNS

Well after a long drawn out process I have opted not to run Squaw Peak. While I was in Pocatello last week my mother fell and she has been in the hospital for a week. 2 surgeries later she is still in pretty bad shape up there. I went on a run last night to clear my head and see if I was going to run but I have made the decision not to. Pretty tough call, one I am sure that I will regret from time to time. I have been dreaming and training for my 4th running of Squaw since last June but the proper training and mind set over the past week has left me little in the tank so to say.
I want to wish everyone good luck at one of my favorite races. I really wish I was toeing the line with you all. Have a great time and I hope to see many of you on the trails!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Pocatello 50

Holy Schleet Batman!
First- hats off to Jared and Ryan and the countless volunteers who make this race possible. What a great course and overall race. The start/finish is perfect!

Okay here we go. I ran the Pokey 50 last year as a member of a 3 person relay. I was lucky enough to draw the 3rd section- which is listed as the toughest leg. This year I ran the 1st section which is considered the “medium toughest” section- the 2nd leg being the easiest. I got in late the night before the race and slept under a pop up canopy with Buffalo Run RD –Jim Skaggs. IT was a sleepless night for me with the wind whipping the canopy walls all night long.

When morning broke I got up and assessed what I was going to wear. The weather was calmer and the clouds were grey but overall the start was pretty nice. I opted for some short shorts, short sleeve race shirt, visor and light windbreaker. From the start we took off down the road and my pace felt relaxed but I couldn’t get a handle on my breathing- it felt forced and labored. I wanted to push myself seeing I was only going 16 miles and knew this would be a great run to prep me for Squaw Peak. I was going to take off my wind shell but soon as I reached for the zipper, I felt a few drops of rain. I thought what the hell and took it off anyway and tied it on my waist. A few more miles into the gradual climb I came around a point and the wind hit me right it the face. WOW! Immediately I reached for my shell and threw it back on. Good thing to because the rain started to pick up. By this time I was running some absolutely stunning single track. I didn’t mind the rain and the mud wasn’t too bad yet. As we started a little decent to the first aid station, the trail got really slick. I got into a line of about 8 or 9 runners and no one could stay up. People were slipping, falling and using the grass and trees close by as emergency turn out lanes. One guy started flailing about and before I could stop he punched my right in the mouth. As uncomfortable as it felt it was kind of funny.

When we hit the first aid station I decided not even to slow down. Once off the service road it turned into some nicer slippery single track. Good thing I didn’t know what I was about to encounter or I may have stopped at the first aid station and stayed. As I looked u ahead I saw “the climb”. There was no trail only a few markers spread going up the mountain. This climb was a real b$#&%! Not only was it pretty steep and no trail but the wind starting picking up - few times it knocked me sideways a bit. The next 60 minutes may have been the longest of my life. I was in short shorts, visor and windbreaker carrying a water bottle which for me sounds about right but I had no idea there would be 40-50 mph winds coupled with sleet the size of BB’s. I let out some primal screams a few times due to the cold and pain I felt when those damn BB’s hit me. My ears were frozen my fingers looked like sausage links and well my skull was frozen- yes Skull. My hair was frozen and I was cold but I have never felt a frozen skull- it hurt like hell! Once on top I took a deep sigh of relief and followed a few people ahead of me only to find out they were lost in the white out. Not good! There were about 10-12 of us wandering around and I was scoping out who may be the first person we would eat. After about 20-30 minutes we found the trail and it took me a good mile to mile and a half to really start to feel like I was running and by that time it was a muddy slip-n-slide. On the decent I went down pretty hard on my stomach (superman style) and got up covered in mud. A few cuts but I was okay. There was a small creek crossing the trail so I decided to lay in it to clean up. It worked and it wasn’t nearly as cold as the top of the mountain. Once we hit a little firmer trail I took off. I felt pretty strong heading into City Creek and my time was 3:40. I figured the time on the mountain cost me at least 30 minutes so I was pretty pleased with the time.

When I got back to Mink Creek I was pretty bummed to see my canopy had blown over and my stuff was soaked- sleeping bag, clothes, bag- everything! DAMN! Right then I remembered I had an extra bag of clothes in the car. Sweet! Once I got cleaned up (thanks Matt and Brandy) I helped around mink Creek and was told the race was cancelled. The weather was just too bad. They absolutely made the right choice! My 2nd leg runner Greg- crushed it! He topped his time from last year by 2 hours!!!! Incredible! Great job Greg! Next year I get #2- right? Unfortunately Matt (3rd leg) was unable to run and this would have been his first experience into trail running. Keep running Matt! Good friend Scott Jaime was leading the race by 5-10 minutes heading into the last leg- I think there would have been a new CR. Great job Jaime!

To top off an already dismal day, when I called home to check in I found out my mom was about to go in for surgery. While I was gone she fell and broke her hip. I got right home and didn’t get to spend too much time talking to people but hopefully I will see you all around this year. Next up Squaw Peak 50!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Timp Trail Marathon

I’ve heard that you learn something new in every race. Well, this was one of those races.

I had to get up at 3 am and meet Jim at his house about 4 am. We drove down to Provo for the inaugural Timp Trail Marathon. All the way down it was raining pretty hard and the outside temps were around 40 degrees. I think we kept testing each other to see if one of us would back out so the other could follow but no dice. We arrived at the start to check in and grab our bib. It was still coming down and the runners were all gathering under the pavilion. After some pre-race instructions we all head to the start line for the 6 am gun.

We were off, we started up right away but it was runnable. It was on fire road and gravel so it was actually a nice start considering what we were about to encounter. As we came around the mountain to see the light of Provo, we saw a trail sign to turn and go down. Well about ¼ of the way down I looked up to see almost all the front runners coming back up. I immediately put on the brakes and turned around. We had taken a wrong turn. The sign was there for later in the race- about mile 25. As we got back on track, the fire road soon turned into a slog through sticky mud. The rain had taken its toll already and the course was muddy. Going through the first aid station I felt pretty good. I had a good couple weeks of training and never backed off going into this one. My legs were a bit tired but I was hoping this would all pay off later in the year. About 6 miles in I went to take a drink for my hydration vest and only got air- what the hell? I had 2 liters 6 mile ago and sure wasn’t drinking that much. As I stripped the vest off my back I realized how saturated my shorts were- especially in the back. DAMN! My hydration bladder had a seam leak. Well, I decided it was to be a long day!

When we started our first real climbing around mile 11, I noticed myself sweating much more and using a lot more energy. This wasn’t good. It turned slow and go for awhile and when the trail became runnable again it was the kind of mud that takes your shoes off. I ran with Jim Skaggs a majority of the day and lucky for me he let me takes little nips off his water. It wasn’t enough but it was something. As we headed up the most beautiful section I have seen in a long time I could feel a bonk coming on. No water which meant no way to wash down some gel. I was literally running on empty. I took a few drinks from the creeks (keeping my fingers crossed still) but I really had no choice. Every add station I hit I threw down potato chips and water praying it would get me to the next aid station.

We got to run through some amazing country and when we started our first decent, I was flying- way too fast for me but I was in a groove. I slipped and fell a few times but no damage, I was essentially mud glissading. After the last aide station we still had one or two short but decent climbs and then it was a bomb downhill. By the time I hit the downhill my calves were really ceasing up. They were screaming! The last 5 miles I just took off. I looked down and saw I was clocking about an 8 and sub 8 mile but had no desire to slow. As I neared the finish, I saw my niece and wife who had hiked up the trail to see when I would be heading down. They gave me that last little surge and I finished under 6:20- well 6:19 was my time.

Looking back at all the rain, mud, snow, nutrition and hydration issues- I feel pretty good about the day. I kept reminding myself I am getting ready for Squaw and this race was incredible! I enjoyed everything about the race itself- trails, scenery, start/finish, volunteers, RD and all. I definitely recommend this race to anyone. Don’t let the marathon distance fool you. This is one tough mutha!

So what I learned to day was- check your gear! If I would have noticed the leak the morning of or night before, I like my chances of a top 20 spot. As I sit, 33rd. Great day on the trails and a good one for my confidence heading into the last 2 weeks.

Friday, May 7, 2010

A few days of running

Playing a little catch up here. After the hill repeats on Monday I needed a day off. Tuesday was nice to just relax and do some things around the house and hit my girls soccer game.
Wednesday I met Joel at Rainbow and could tell my legs were still a bit heavy. We made a easy pace up out of Rainbow and took Indian Trail just to the Hidden Valley turn out. Once there, we went back down and took the BST to "look out rock". The pace as a little off the normal due to both of us not having much in the legs. We turned back to Rainbow and I tried to push myself just a little bit. My legs were not responding well and I kept trying to tell myself I would loosen up. No dice!
Before we headed down to Rainbow, a couple young guys came flyin down the trail- BJ and John. First I had met either one of them but they had a real nice pace going. We invited them to join us in the future but not sure if this old man could keep up.
Lots of solid runners here in the Ogden area.
Thursday- I took off work to re-landscape the frontyard. After 8 hours of hauling river rock and mulch, planting trees, bushes and plants and the clean up I was gassed! Decided I wouldn't run since the body was sore and tired. I took a shower about 6:20 and sent Jim a text to see if he was running- Yep, he was. DAMN! I told my wife I was going and she gave me "the look"(she thought I was nuts).
Met Jim at Rainbow and we had a nice run on the north side. Solid pace but not rushed. Legs felt a bit better.
Wednesday= 6-7 miles
Thursday= 6-7 miles
I want to wish my wife GOOD LUCK tomorrow in her first ever race! She will be running the Run with Flock 5k. Have fun Melony! I am very proud of you.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Hill repeats

First off- I never run on Mondays and I hate running up hills.
So today is Monday and I did hill repeats (for the first time).
After good Sat and Sun runs, I always take Monday off. most the time to recover and also it is always a long day at work and I need to spend some family time. Well today was a tough day at work so I thought I would join Joel and Jim for some hill repeats to burn off some stream.
When I showed up at 5:30- Joel was there with Phil Lowry. After some pleasantries, we were off.
We started at 27th St trail head and the route is .54 miles up then back down again. The grade is runnable but for me- not easy. I figured I would do one or 2 then head home. When we got back down to do another, Joel had to leave and Jim showed to join us. Phil also decided to go explore the trails. So Jim and I went out again.
Long story short I did 4 sets. My legs were still cooked from the weekend and I actually felt pretty good about the running. I am going to try and do this at least once a week and add a trip or 2 each time.
Solid workout.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Solid Weekend

Got in 2 quality days on the trail.

(I love our trails!)
Started off Saturday morning with Joel on the BST. We had decided to make our way up Malan's for a little elevation and check out the trail. We hadn't plan to go to far but we saw some tracks in the fresh snow (yep it was snowing on May 1st) along with paw prints so we figured whoever was ahead we had to know. Who is crazy enough to be up that early running in the snow with a dog or 2? As we hit the overlook we saw- Cory, John, Matt and Brett with their dogs. We paused a bit to talk then we all took off down to the trail head. When we hit the BST we ran north back towards Rainbow and dropped Joel off and went out for a few more miles. When I finally split off the group to head back it started to really rain. By the time I hit the car I was soaked but man it felt good! 3 hours on the trail....

(Matt, Cory, Molly, John, Brett and Joel)
Sunday was a little rougher. I got up and boy was my body tired. I sure wasn't feeling like hitting the trail and since I was going solo I had nothing to make me go. I am glad I finally got out the door and I headed over to North Ogden Pass to hit the trail and go north. When I started I knew it would be a short run. My legs were heavy, sore and tired. I guess Saturday took its toll on me. I decided to go to the "2nd gate" which is a little over 2 miles and then head back. When I hit the gate I was still not feeling great but a friend told me -"training on tired legs is good for ya." Well, my legs were tired so I decided to go to the "3rd gate". After some running and a steep, short climb I hit the gate I talked myself to go to the next gate. I really started to feel better and running pretty strong. I charged the hills and did more coasting on the way down. I hot the "4th gate" and was turning around when I thought- "what the hell"- I took off to go a bit more to the next gate. On the way back I really pushed. I felt pretty good and could feel the heaviness in my legs but I was determined to push to the finish. When I got back to the car I looked at my watch and I turned in my fastest time for this section. SAA-WEET!
Man, it felt good to run so strong on tired legs. I am starting to think this is all paying off. I need to hit some long runs coming up to really get time on my feet but I feel more confident now that I ever have.
I am looking forward to a solid week!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Solid run

Last night I met Joel and Jim at Rainbow Gardens for a nice little trail run. We left Rainbow and went up to the BST. Good pace all the way to the fire road without stopping. If I would have been alone I would have yelled once I hit the top- legs were burning and pumped I didn't break stride. From there we hit the newest section on this side to keep us off the fire road. We had a real nice pace and when we turned around we picked up Tom Remkes and his dogs.
The way back had a pretty wicked little pace and we pushed the climbs and hammered the descents.
Legs felt great and I can feel things starting to click. Achilles is pretty much a non-issue from a performance standpoint. Still have a little bump back there (the Achilles).
Looking forward to a snowy run tonight.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Busy times.

Been a bit and trying to get back to it. I have put in some nice miles and feel pretty strong. Found a great new training run (for me) and getting out regularly. My race schedule is coming together just adding the Timp Trail Marathon, Pocatello 50 relay and maybe a couple more. With this I have been doing the Team PI-Smith site and stuff as well.
A big project underway is the Northern Utah Trail Series or N.U.T.S.. This has proven to be a huge task and about a 1-1 1/2 years worth of ideas and thoughts flowing into a month or 2 of start time. It has been an eye opening experience dealing with the USFS, County, City and other entities. The good news is we got permitted and are under way for the first race- BST Trail Half Marathon on July 17th. Registration will hope to open on May 1st.
I am hoping to stay on top of the blogging thing and balance everything else.
Side note, my wife Melony just registered for her 1st race! The Run with the Flock 5k TRAIL race on May 8th. Woo-Hoo!
Good Luck and have fun!!!!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

What is "Manjo?"

From Wikipedia
Mojo: (African American culture), a magical charm bag used in hoodoo.
: the sexual charm used by Austin Powers
: (comics)- a supervillian in various Marvel Comics publications
From Merriam-Webster
mojo: probably of African origin; akin to Fulani moco'o medicine man
: a magic spell, hex, or charm; broadly: magical powers- works his mojo on the tennis court

So here is some background on the word mojo
While I was running on Antelope Island for the Buffalo Run, I thought about race strategy and conversations I have had on the trail. I wanted to take chances and see what I could do at the end. "THE END"- well in every race you hear about people "digging down" to get a little more to make it to the finish for a win, a PR or just to be done. I always like to think I can always dig down and find a little somethin- somethin or "mojo".
During Buffalo Run I decided to make "mojo" my own. So I came up with "MANJO".
It will be my (Manners) magical powers or charm. It will be my own bag of hoodoo. Athletes, especially runners have mantra's so MANJO will be part of my mantra. When I need to find a little more I will rely on my "bag" of hoodoo or magical powers- let's face it, it isn't like Austin Powers, I have no sexual charm!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Buffalo Run 2010- report

What a great day on the island! Well I decided to drop down the 25k. I had to decide if I wanted to race/run a 25k or if I wanted to finish a 50k. I opted to see what I could do in the 25k. Since the last 2 weeks I didn't get good training in I wasn't sure what to expect on the course. On the drive out to the island I turned off the radio and phone and just thought in silence. The plan was to go out and just enjoy the day and see some old friends. Once I got to the start, the plan changed. I decided to push hard for the first 5 miles and see how I felt. Since this race starts and goes up gradually 600+ feet I immediately thought my plan was ruined. I just do not go up well at all. To my surprise I did alright and felt decent so I kept chugging along. My pace was comfortable but not too slow and as I settled into it I found it was easier than I thought. I hit the first aid station and was looking forward to the 2 mile downhill. I just let gravity take control and try to keep my fat butt upright. Worked again! Hit the bottom and knew the long switchbacks were in play. I opted to run this as much as I could knowing I had some miles to go after the climb was over. As I neared the top I got a pat on the back from a familiar face- Greg Norrander. Great guy and it gave me a little boost (thanks Greg). He was in the 50k and looking strong! When I got to the top, Jared Campbell (5ok) passed me and I decided to run with him for awhile until he dropped me at the next gradual climb. After that we hit a fun little single track that winds around, up and down until you hit Elephant again. Once there I thought I had an outside chance at my PR. This was my 5th year running the 25k and I remember my favorite ultra quote- "Take chances" (Brian Fisher). I thought- what the hell! After I left Elephant Head I was ready to redline it until I puked or passed out. I was hoping to pass out cause I hate puking. Running through the little valley and heading up the quick steep climb I knew from that point to the finish would test me. I can usually dig down and find some "manjo" (more on that later) to finish pretty strong. All I could think about was "Take Chances"! I felt if I pushed hard I really could get my PR. Well, I ran hard as I could and kept telling myself it would be over soon. As I headed down the to the finish I kept glancing at my watch and knew redlining may be cutting it close so I tried to find another gear. As I hit the fence line I heard some familiar voices as well as saw some smiling faces. I crossed in 2:31:26 which was my PR by over 3 minutes. Not huge but for a guy like me, it was pretty cool.
It felt good to run the race the way I did considering my poor training. I was there just in time to see my good friend Scott Jaime finish the 50 mile. Read about that HERE. As I was on my way over to some Buffalo Stew I saw Nick Clark who just set the CR for the 50k. Read about that HERE.
Meandering around the finish area I got to meet some new people and catch up with some old friends. Maybe this is why I run these races. I will rack this up to a very successful day on all fronts. Congrats to all who ran, volunteered and supported. A BIG thank you to RD Jim Skaggs- a great guy, great RD and good friend. Thanks for putting on such a great race. Once again the race received rave reviews all around. I recommend this race to anyone and everyone! It sure is attracting some solid runners and a large number to boot.
Read more about "manjo" is my next post and remember- Take Chances!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Buffalo Run 2010

The 2010 Buffalo Run is here. Always a fun early season race on a fun course. I signed up for the 50 mile but have been battling some little niggles over the past 3+ weeks. Haven't posted much since not much is going on. Definitely been running but groin and calf have been issues. Running on all the white stuff and its instability has caused the problems so I have spent a lot of time on the roads. I will drop down to either the 50k or 25k depending on the next 2 days.
During all this I have been working on the Northern Utah Trail Series and we FINALLY got approval. They gave us one for sure race to prove our worth and then more to follow.
So mark your calendars for July 17th! N.U.T.S. will be holding a trail half marathon on the Bonneville Shoreline Trail in Ogden. The course is beautiful and a first for our area.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Team Pearl Izumi-Smith Summit

Well after some mediocre training this past week, I am off to Colorado for the team summit. All the athletes and sponsors will be in Boulder for a couple days of product testing, design info, feedback, education, running, sharing a few beers and some stories of the trail but more importantly the Team "Balls of Fury" Table Tennis competition.
I am looking forward to spending some time with not only great athletes but amazing people. This will be my Disneyland trip!!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

William Wayne Manning

5 years ago today I lost my dad. It is something we all go through- losing a parent or close loved one. Not a day goes by I do not think about him. It's funny, sometimes the thoughts I have are ones brought on by something I say or do. I have a lot of my dad in me. Not all his traits and characteristics but many key ones. He taught me my love for athletics. He taught me to fish, set up a tent and drive. He taught me love for the outdoors. He pushed me to be the best I could be at the sport for whatever season we were in. He taught me to be on time or early, never late. There are many things I can take away from my dad that make me proud. There are things I can take away that are not things I agree with or understand either. He taught me nobody is perfect even if in my eyes they were. It wasn't until he dropped me off for college in Oregon until I truly seen him cry. He was my best friend. My coach. My dad.
I doubt he would ever understand the running I do now. He passed before I picked up my new hobby. It was always soccer and baseball. He would think I was crazy- which I'm sure I am to a degree. The crazy thing about running is I feel closer to him at those times than any other. Being outside in the mountains gaining elevation- I get closer. I know he is with me, he always will be. When I race, I carry a spent gun casing from his funeral- he is always there when I need the pick me up. I was presented with the flag and I can honestly say- that is the greatest honor I have felt and made me more proud than ever. He served in the Air Force and the Navy.
He did have his short-comings and so do I. He had his strengths- and I like to think I have a set of those as well. I am glad you got to meet Melony and Sami. You passed 2 weeks before my 1st daughter was born. I like to think you met somewhere along the way. Aspen will know her grandpa through my stories and my voice.
Dad, I love you and miss you. Thanks for showing me my passions. I hope to one day be the kind of father that you were. It may have been rough at times but as I grow older, I understand more. Thanks for hitting the trails with me and pushing me farther. Thanks for showing me it's not okay to stop short of the goal. Thanks for showing me that if you want something you go and get it and not wait for it.
You left too early and I may never understand why. I may still have days where I am angry. I may always feel like I could have been there more for you in your final years. One thing for sure, you made me a better person by all your traits- good and bad. We all need to make decisions and I am glad you taught me how to make those- good or bad. Most of all I hope you are looking down on me and feel proud of what I have become.
R.I.P. Dad- your little boy- Aric

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Moab Red Hot 50k Report

My family and I headed down to Moab for the annual Moab Red Hot races. I felt lucky to go down since the day before the race was my 6 year anniversary being married to my very supportive and beautiful wife. I registered for the 33k and had been waffling with the idea of doing the 50k. The night before we left I decided to stick to the 33k and packed accordingly. I only took what I would need for the 33k so I couldn't change my mind at the last minute. Once we got down there we drove over to Eddie McStiff's for check-in. I stood in the 33k line and told them my name---I wasn't on the list. They checked the 50k list and there I was. So, I decided to just do the 50k. Why not?

After check-in we got a table and enjoyed the "runner's special". Athletes started piling in to check-in and I got the chance to see some familiar faces and good friends. This helped make it official- I was back. Sitting out since June of 2009 was tough and I started to get those butterflies in the tummy.

We went back to the hotel and I got my stuff ready while the family hit the hotel pool. I didn't sleep well- partly due to excitement as well as nerves.

Race morning was a balmy 14 degrees. The race kicked off at 8 am and it was cold. You could see all the runners trying to figure out what to wear. I opted for shorts, shirt and a long sleeve. When the race started I settled into a pretty comfortable pace knowing it was going to be a long day. We hit the incline right off the start and there was no dirt to be found. Snow everywhere. Combined with the slickrock, there were quite a few falls all along the course. About 5miles in we started our next little climb and the snow was easily mid shin deep for close to 4 miles. This made it tough. I felt good up to the 20 mile mark and was pleased with my pace. The sun was out now and the temps were rising. I shed the long sleeve and just had my short sleeve to work with. As i hit the 2nd to last aide station, I started to feel the heat a abit and needed to get more fluids. I pulled into the aide station to fill my bottles and get out. Problem: they ran out of water. Damn! The next aide station was close to 6+ miles away and I was already behind in the fluids. Some runners shared some choice words and a group of us left the aide station. I was no more than 100 yards out and started to cramp up. First my right calf then my left. Perfect. We were starting a nice downhill section on slickrock and I had to walk a majority of it. Unfortunately for me, I was forced to walk a real good chunk from here. I stopped a couple times and gobbled down some snow but it didn't help much. I kept reminding myself that I just wasn't "born to tun". A mountain biker came by and I was only about a 1/4 mile from the aide station so I asked him if he had seen it and how much farther. He replied- "about 2.5 miles to 3", my face sunk. He mentioned due to the trail conditions they couldn't make it to the original location. Well that was just perfect I thought. When I finally made it to the last aide station, they were out of water as well. By this point I wanted it to all be over. A rush of adrenaline/anger kicked in and I took off to the finish. I would be curious to know my actual pace to the finish cause I felt like I was movin.

When I got to the line, the clock read 7:24. I was relieved to be done but pissed at my time. I was hoping for at least an hour off that.

All in all, I got time on my feet and got to run with some great people. We got in a quality family vacation and hopefully it helped me more for the Buffalo Run 50 miler in March.

When you go that slow in races they do have an award. Here it is below.....kissin a camel on Valentines Day!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Moab Red Hot- Pre-race

So in a couple days I will be running my first race since Squaw Peak last June. I am truly excited. I really look forward to getting back out there with all the other athletes and running through the Red rocks of Moab. With the winter training I have put in I am looking forward to running this again. I ran it 2 years ago and had a great time. It will be nice having a change of scenery and a mini vacation with the family. I have toyed with the idea of upping to the 50k but I think I will stick to the 33k. Still early in the year for me and I feel comfortable with my Achilles going 33k. I am not going to put a time on this race or a prediction. I am going to try and run it how I feel and push maybe more than I normally would. Use this as a solid trainer for my 50 miler next month on Antelope Island.
My race schedule is really firming up. I wanted to run two 100-milers this year- one being the Bear 100 and after Hardrock denial (whew!) I just sent my stuff in for the Swan Crest 100 in Montana. Looks like an exciting and beautiful course and the fact you need to carry bear spray for the entire race or get DQ'd seems interesting. I think the key will be to try and stay close to a runner or 2 and if all hell breaks loose with a grizzly- start tripping people.....HA!
Well, I hope to see some familiar faces in Moab this weekend and have a few beers to catch up on the ultra life!
Man, I am excited............

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

A good January

While my posts were few and far between, I did get some good miles in this month. January is a month I have NEVER gone far. Low miles and excuses. Well this January I am happy to say I did 145 miles. Not to bad to start the year. Not as many as most but for me and being January, I am very happy. I am hoping to get over 200 for February and stay above that for awhile. Getting the Achilles injury under control, I didn't want to push to hard to fast but I feel very comfortable with this. I got in some speedwork, weight training and cross training which didn't compute to the miles but definitely helped with overall fitness.
Hopefully February will stay injury free. I am really looking forward to the race in Moab. It looks like I will do the 33k. I toyed with the idea of the 50k but decided to make sure I am up to it (Achilles). I don't want to take any chances.
Side note, the Hard Rock lottery is this weekend and like a fool I put in. It's on my birthday so what the hell. The hope was to NOT get in but rather build up some tickets for the future. Problem is I am batting .500 with lotteries (Wasatch 100 2008-in Western States 2010- nope)so this could help or hurt the average.
While you are here, check out the contest HERE.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Pounding Pavement

Well its been a couple weeks since my last post and I can honestly say I have run more miles on the pavement this year (25 days worth) than all of last year combined! Man, I hate the road. I have been getting in the hills as much as possible but snow and time restraints have forced me to the road. With my iPod in tow, I have been able to pound out some solid miles all the while thinking about the paved sections at Squaw Peak I love so much (insert sarcasm). In a few weeks my family and I will be heading to Moab for the Red Hot. I signed up for the 33k and have been flirting with the idea of the 50k but can't decide if I am ready for it. I do know I am ready to get out of town for a vacation with the family. I hope to see some familiar faces in Moab as well as some damn dirt!
So the question is 50k or 33k...hmmmmm

Monday, January 11, 2010

Solid week and a view on the Wasatch

Had a great week of running. Mixed in road and trail and finished with 22 miles up Farmington Canyon (4500' of climbing) to the towers and took a few shots on the Wasatch 100 course.
The week felt pretty good with little to no issues. Saturday I decided to hit an icy spot on the trail and land on the big right cheek. Bruised the ego but that was that.
Sunday I had a tough run. Got a few pictures to show. The header on my blog is from the towers in Farmington. Truly beautiful! I just saw a report that the air quality in Northern Utah is the worst in the nation. DAMN! We are finally first at something and it is bad air quality.
Well, here is a picture to prove it.

For the week I got in 50 miles on the button which is a good week for a guy like me. Hoping to build on it a bit. This week I will be doing some speed work. and speed have never been close friends.One thing I did to end the week is find dirt. It is January in the Wasatch mtns at 9500'. Sure felt nice to see some dry dirt.

And one last photo- here is the Maintenance shed aide station local on the Wasatch 100 course. Looks different than the last time I was there.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

2010 is under way

So last year was basically a wash. Learned a few things and it also looks like my Achilles is finally ready. I am getting some solid training in and I have registered for some great races. I may have figured out a great balance between family, work and running too. Being the Director for the Pearl Izumi-Smith Endurance Team really takes up a lot more time than anticipated but I have got to meet some amazing people and great athletes. SO let's just say 2010 is rolling and rolling fast!
So what does 2010 hold? Good question. I can plan the best I possible can but we all know that is never how it works out. For example, I just found out my chocolate lab (Trout) needs knee surgery- that's $1500 right off the top, plus the 4 new tires ($600)- oh and the bill I just got from the hospital for my daughter who was sick ($2300). So a few days into the New Year and I am $4400 light in the wallet ...errrr back account.
How do you plan for that? Well you don't. So now I am just trying to accept the good fortune and re-arrange my race and travel schedule.
So here is the plan for 2010- Feb- Moab Red Hot 50k, March -Buffalo Run 50 mile, April- Rim 2 Rim 2 Rim (i hope), May is free, June- Squaw Peak 50, Logan Peak Trail run, July- put in for Hardrock (i hope i don't get in this year), possible SpeedGoat 50k, August- El Vaquero Loco, Sept- Grand Teton Race and The Bear 100, Oct- Mtn View race on the Island and that should do it. There are a few more I would "like" to do though. i.e. Timp Trail Marathon (May), Big Horn (June) and Trans Rockies but that is out of my price range.
I feel pretty good about the year and my main goal is to stay healthy, get fit(ter) and enjoy my time on the trails. I really missed it last year.
So there are my plans- oh wait, I am in the process of putting together a local trail series here in Northern Utah (keeping my fingers crossed for USFS approval).
2010 will be a busy year but after missing 80% of 2009, I welcome it.
I hope everyone has a great 2010, stays healthy but most of all- enjoys their time doing whatever it is you do. Here is a great quote I heard not too long ago.
"Keep doing what you're doing until you can't do it anymore."