Sunday, December 26, 2010
Sunday, December 19, 2010
I felt pretty good all day which I was pretty happy about since this was by far my longest run since Lean Horse in August with more vertical (7500 feet+) in 31 miles than Lean Horse had in 100. The effort level was more long training run than racing and I was fine with this. We cruised along and it was great to pass and be passed by other friends on the trail. Pete flew by us coming down the Timber Trail and went on to post the fastest 50K time of the day (5:44). We ran off and on with Blue Sky Marathon winner Jenn Malmberg who was just enjoying an easy day on the trails. We enjoyed a great aid station stop at mile 22 hosted by Chris with a welcome spread of cookies, pretzels, water and chocolate. Rob Erskine having started 45 minutes after us caught us here and we ran on and off with him to the finish.
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Sunday, December 5, 2010
Ean and I, along with 49 others ran in the Tortoise and Hare 10K this morning on the Poudre Trail out and back from Lee Martinez Park. It was a mild December morning and we both ran reasonably well. Ean ran a 10K PR and was the first to finish. This will certainly move her up in the series standings where she was tied for 4th and now is probably 1st or 2nd. I ran 42:33, which was a long way from a PR for me, but was only 9 seconds slower than the T&H prediction of 42:24. I felt pretty good about this considering I ran a pretty solid 15+ miles on the Blue Sky Trail and Devil's Backbone on Saturday. After the run we all went to Avo's for the Fort Collins Running Club holiday brunch. Lots of good food and good people.
Friday, November 26, 2010
- I am thankful for my wonderful wife and two children who got out of bed on Thanksgiving morning when it was 8 degrees outside and ran the Fort Collins Thanksgiving 4-mile race.
- I am thankful for my health that has allowed me to keep running through the onset of type 1 diabetes over 10 years ago and not only run but accomplish new goals that I thought impossible at the diagnosis of the condition.
- I am thankful for running and the joy that it brings to my life and the opportunities it provides for fun adventures and traditions like running a race on Thanksgiving morning. This was our 5th consecutive Fort Collins Thanksgiving race and I have run a race on Thanksgiving morning 18 out of the last 20 years.
- I am thankful for my friends and the great running community that I live in. I am thankful for all the friends that I saw at the race and those who stopped by or stayed for dinner yesterday and that even though much of my family is far away I can still sit at a holiday table surrounded by good people with common interests and enjoy a good meal.
- I am thankful for where I live. It is deeply comforting to know that after I finish this post, I can lace up my shoes, head out my front door and within a 5 minute jog down the street I will be running beautiful trails and breathing cold, clean mountain air.
- I am thankful for the challenges ahead. My goals to run a sub 19 minute 5K, a sub three hour marathon, and a mountain 100-miler in 2011 keep me motivated and help me to keep getting back out on the trails to see what I can do.
Happy Running and Happy Thanksgiving!
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Sunday, November 14, 2010
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Monday, November 1, 2010
What better way to start Halloween than a 5K with the family at the park just down the street. We all ran yesterday in costume and had a great time. I was hoping to run under 18 and after going out a bit too fast and struggling to maintain pace in the last mile, I finished in 20:04. A bit disappointing, but it was good enough for 3rd place in the 30-39 age group and 10th place overall. Maddie placed 3rd in the kids race after running the 5K and then she was awarded 3rd in the costume contest for her homemade Mario costume. Shadow and Ean (dressed as the Green Lantern) ran a solid race and Micah completed the whole course in full gorilla suit.
After the race, I went for a nice cool down jog in Pineridge with Don and Nick and then we met the family and some others back at the house for a nice post race breakfast and pumpkin carving on the deck. It was a beautiful warm fall day.
Sunday, October 24, 2010
John and I did a 6-mile loop via the outside of the Mahogany Loop, the Valley Trail and the Towhee Loop. Then we ran back up the Towhee Loop and met up with the rest of the gang and ran the inside of the Towhee Loop and the Mahogany Loop and back the trail head for a total of 12 miles. After some snacks and warmer clothes at the cars, Ean, John and I headed back to Fort Collins while Mary and Jennifer headed out for another 10 miles on the Pronghorn Loop.
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Sunday, October 17, 2010
This was my first road marathon since Boston in April of 2006 and I signed up back in June as a marathon trial run before attempting to go sub 3 at next year's Colorado Marathon here in Fort Collins. I had planned to do some marathon training (tempo runs, track intervals, fast finish long runs, etc) in August and September, but with the late addition of the Lean Horse 100 to my race schedule and the continued troubles with plantar fasciitis, training never happened. I did go out for one easy long run 3 weeks ago and I ran the Crossroads Half a month ago, so I knew I had the fitness to complete the marathon, but no speed to run it fast.
My plan going in to the race was to go out easy at 7:45-8:00 min pace and see how I felt after 15 miles or so. I was prepared to be happy just enjoying the day and running anywhere close to 3:30.
I arrived at the start line by 6:00 am after a 4:15 departure from Fort Collins. I was too relaxed about getting in to the starting corral and missed the wave one start, but thank goodness for timing chips, I started with wave two and set off at a comfortable pace. My first couple of miles were in the 7:30 range and I worried a little about starting off too fast. I felt pretty relaxed and in control and I was really enjoying running through the early morning streets of Denver with the flow of so many runners.
I continued to run 7:25-7:45 miles as we wound through town and all of Denver's major parks. I knew that at mile 15 we would enter Washington Park and continue to run through and around the park until mile 20. I decided to try to just keep my current pace through the park and then I hoped to pick it up at mile 20 and push it in to the finish. I ran 7:30-7:40 all the way through the 5 miles in the park.
At mile 20 I was still feeling pretty good and 6 miles felt very doable. I ran mile 21 in 7:23 and mile 22 in 7:27. Going in to mile 23 I was losing my ability to keep pushing, but with less that 4 miles to go I was confident I could hold on. Mile 23 went off in 7:29. Mile 24 was painful as we went all the way up and over a long overpass and once we got almost down the other side, the course did a U-turn and went back up and over again. This was my slowest mile of the day 7:50. After this, I was ready to be done and pushed on. In the final mile, when I was really starting to drag, I caught up with Aaron Nelson from the trail runners and we pushed each other in to a much better finish than I would have had on my own. I ran hard all the way in for a 3:23:13 and my 4th fastest marathon.
After the race, I ran in to and caught up with several friends who had run the race as well. Kemp, my former neighbor and an all around good guy who unfortunately moved to Lakewood last spring ran a 3:29 which was fast enough to earn him a trip to Boston 2011. Mike Hinterberg ran a 3:03 for his fastest marathon ever by 4 minutes. Aaron held on after a tough run and finished just seconds behind me. Sarah Brown finished her first marathon accomplishing one of her life goals. There were many other Fort Collins friends who ran well in Denver and it was great that in a race of 15,000, I could look around and see so many familiar faces.
Sunday, October 10, 2010
Sunday, September 19, 2010
I woke up feeling alright this morning, ate a waffle, drank two cups of coffee and drove down town for the start. It was a cool, foggy morning that felt really good for a run. I saw a few friends at the start, jogged a good warm up, ran a couple strides and lined up for the start. I went through the first mile in 6:24 feeling pretty good, but worried about how this fast starting pace would affect me later. I ran miles 2-9 pretty steady in 6:38-6:50 per mile. I was definitely pushing, but I felt reasonably strong and hoped to keep it going through the final miles. A sub 1:30 finish looked very possible if I could just maintain the pace. I went through the 10K mark in 41:58 which was faster than my Bolder Boulder time this year. After the first 4 miles through neighborhoods around New Belgium, the course turned est on to the Poudre Trail and followed in out to the intersection with Spring Creek. I have run these paths many times and felt very comfortable cruising along at a steady pace.
My legs started feeling heavy in the middle of mile 10 going through Edora and Spring Parks and my pace fell to 6:58. We turned off the Spring Creek Trail on to Remington just before mile 11 and I knew I was slowing down. I tried to keep pushing knowing that I just need to keep the pace under 7 minutes for 2 1/2 more miles to go under 1:30. I hit mile 11 in 7:14, my slowest mile of the day, and started to lose the will to push for the sub 1:30 finish. Mile 12 was 7:08 and I tried to ramp it up for the last 1.1 miles. There was a little down hill coming in to Old Town and I was able to step up the pace a little, but I didn't have a lot of kick left. Mile 13 beeped at just under 7 minutes and I didn't look at the total time as I crossed Jefferson towards the finish. I pushed to finish strong, but I didn't think 1:30 was possible and there was no one close enough in front of me to try to catch. I ran in to the finish strong, but controlled and hit the stop button - 1:30:06. I was frustrated with coming so close to 1:29:xx and missing it. I'm sure I could have taken 7 seconds off my time somewhere, but I didn't. On the other hand, I did run faster and stronger than I thought I could with an average pace better than 6:52 per mile. I have run 15+ half marathons, and never had a bad one. It seems to be the perfect distance that is not too long yet not long enough to require a really fast pace.
By the finish, the sun had come out and it was a beautiful fall day in Fort Collins. I grabbed some water and a bagel and cheered on the finishing runners. Cat from the trail runners came by before long pushing a running stroller with one of the kids supported by Dennis' Athletes in Tandem organization.
The post race at the park was warm, sunny and friendly. I talked with some friends about their races and the beautiful weather, cheered on some more finishers, checked the results (39th OA, 4th AG) and headed home.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Monday, August 30, 2010
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Sunday, August 1, 2010
We struggled through following course markers for a part of the course that we shouldn't have been running until much later until we got to an aid station where volunteers contacted the race director who said Garry and I could complete the section we were on and continue the course and then run the same section later. I spent a of energy being worried and frustrated about being off course, but I tried to get over it and keep going. Losing the course meant missing an aid station at mile 37 where I was to meet Ean and eat and resupply, but I was able to send her a message with one of the 50 mile racers (thanks Jasmine) and I now wouldn't see her until the top of the big climb at mile 56.
Monday, July 12, 2010
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
July 2 segments 1, 2 Waterton Canyon to FS-550 28 miles
July 3 segments 3, 4 FS-550 to Long Gulch 29 miles
July 4 segments 5, 6 Long Gulch to Georgia Pass 27 miles
July 5 segment 6 cont. Georgia Pass to Goldhill 21 miles
July 6 segments 7, 8 Goldhill to Tennessee Pass 38 miles
July 7 segments 9, 10 Tennessee Pass to Halfmoon Creek 27 miles
July 8 sements 11, 12 Halfmoon Creek to N. Cottonwood Creek 40 miles
July 9 segment 13 N. Cottonwood Creek to Chalk Creek 23 miles
Total 234 miles
Monday, June 28, 2010
We stayed on track Mon-Friday which meant riding with Maddie the 5 miles each way to track practice, Ean and I rode to the Tuesday night run, then to the Trailhead Tavern and then home in the dark. We rode witht the trailer to do our shopping at Sam's Club and we rode to the Gadrens at Spring Creek for the Bike and Jazz Concert on Friday evening. Wednesday was Bike to Work Day and there were an amazing 57 breakfast stations set up throughout the city where cyclists could stop in between 6:30 and 9:30 for a free breakfast. Since Micah and I had no work to ride to on Wednesday morning, we decided to ride around and eat all the free breakfasts that we could. Micah drew out a plan that included 32 breakfasts, but a little math showed that we would have to ride and eat very fast to complete that route. We left the house at 6:15 to make the first spot by opening and continued through town eating pancakes, bagels, breakfast burritos, muffins, cinamon rolls, fruit and coffee (at one spot, I topped off my coffee with raw milk from a cow that stood a few feet away) for three hours. We ate 16 breakfasts (we took some to go) and had a great time. The paper reported record participation in the event this year with over 6000 people out riding to where they needed to go. I love Fort Collins.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
I celebrated my 36th birthday yesterday by running the Big Horn 50 mile trail race. It was a tough run and a long day. I had hoped to cut half an hour off last year's time to finish in 11 hours, but I was not quite in the shape that I needed to be and I finished in 11:31:45. All in all it was a good day and I toughed out a few rough patches. The weather was nice and the course was beautiful even though the trail was a bit muddy.
The day began with a 3:15 am bus ride from Sheridan to the finish in Dayton and then up to the start at the Porcupine ranger station. I woke up feeling pretty good. Maddie sang me happy birthday, Micah wished me a good run and Ean drove to the bus. I got a little sleep on the way up to Porcupine and we got there with enough time for me to wait in the porta potty line right up until the 6:00 am start.
I ran with fellow Fort Collins trail runners, Terry, Tim and Adam for a while. This was Adam and Tim's first 50 and Terry a veteran of many ultras including Hard Rock was along to encourage Tim through. The first 5 miles were very marshy and muddy, but not nearly as snowy as I expected. We all laughed and had a good time mucking through the marshy parts of the course and enjoyed the beauty of the early morning sun.
I felt good through the early miles and kept right on my goal pace. I arrived at the Foot Bridge Aid Station at mile 18, the first drop bag location, in under 3 and half hours. It felt great to rinse off my feet and put on dry socks and shoes. I filled my water, ate a PB&J and headed across the bridge and up the first and biggest climb of the course fondly referred to as "the wall". I caught up with Adam after a few minutes and we walked and talked our way up the climb, admiring the fields of wild flowers. I pushed on ahead and made it to the top in just over an hour, but I was feeling pretty spent. From the top of the wall, the trail rolls along for a while though a wooded area and I took this whole section pretty slow.
I went through the next couple of aid stations pretty quickly and started feeling a bit better. I passed Marie who was running the 100 and her pacer Paul just before Kerns Cow Camp at mile 28. Marie seemed to be doing well and I had a chance to talk to Paul about his summer racing schedule which includes the Western States 100 next weekend, the Badwater 135 two weeks after that and the Furnace Creek 508 bike race in the beginning of October.
I had a short stop at Cow Camp and continued on to the second drop bag location at Dry Fork (mile 34.5) You can see the aid station from over 2 miles away across the valley and it is a long slow gradual climb to get there. I passed Kiwi Rob running the 100 with his wife Cecili pacing. He said he was having some ankle trouble and just hoping to make the cut offs. He still seemed in good spirits and encouraged me to "keep going mate". I found out later that he had made it to the turnaround in 12 hours and in 20th place then twisted his ankle in the mud just after 50 miles. Rather than drop, he walked all the way to the finish and made it just under the cut off in 33:36- very impressive.
I kept up my steady pace and walked the final hill into the aid station in just under 8 hours. The aid station volunteers were very helpful with getting my drop bag, filling my water and offering me a chair. It felt good to sit down and I checked my blood sugar with a test kit I had in my drop bag. It was a perfect 111 and I was feeling good. I stuffed my hydration pack into my drop bag, decided not to change socks and shoes, walked into the food tent for some pretzels and a tortilla roll up with turkey and avocado- it was great- and walked out on to the road glad to have less than 18 miles to go.
I continued on to Upper Sheep Creek feeling tired but still able to maintain a reasonable mix of walking and slow running. After the Upper Sheep aid station at mile 39, there is the last real climb of the day which is very steep but not nearly as long as the wall. I walked the whole climb and was very glad to get to the top of the ridge knowing that there was only about 11 miles to go and it was all down hill.
This is the part of the course that I felt great on last year and made really good time. The course travels down a green hillside and along a stretch that looks down the valley all the way back in to Dayton. I didn't have the legs left to run as hard as I would have liked here, but I kept on going glad to be getting closer to the finish.
Terry flew past me just before the Lower Sheep Creek aid station with about 8 miles to go. The trail smooths out here a bit and I hoped to stay with him, but my legs didn't quite have it. The lst section of trail runs along the Tongue River and is really nice and runnable. I enjoyed this section and smiled and waved and a kilted man playing bagpipes on the side of the trail. Before I knew it, I was at the cheery Tongue River Road aid station. I filled my bottle ate a little and checked the sign on the way out that said there was only 5 miles to the finish.
The last 5 miles run along a dirt camp ground access road that rolls through some farms and horse properties in to the small town (population 658) of Dayton, WY. I went through the first mile on the road in about 9 minutes, but couldn't keep up the pace all the way in.
I was glad again to see the home stretch aid station where a volunteer met me in the road with a grape otter pop and the news that it was only 1.7 miles to the finish. I walked just long enough to eat my otter pop which tasted really good and then ran the rest of the the road in to Dayton, crossed the bridge over the Tongue river and crossed the road in to Scott Park. I saw Ean and Maddie as I rounded the corner and Maddie ran out to meet me. Micah jumped out of the car and the three of us ran the last 100 yards in to the park while Ean snapped some pictures.
It felt good to finish and it was very nice to have my family there to greet me. I took off my shoes and stood in the river to wash off 52 miles and 11 and a half hours of mud from my legs. The cold water felt great and Shadow came in to join me.
We stayed at the park for a while and enjoyed the picnic and watched our friends finish their 50 and 100 mile adventures. It was a great day, I enjoyed the run and a the trail and the whole experience. I couldn't think of a better way to spend my birthday.