8 Tuff

8 Tuff

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Hallucination 100

Well here it is 4 + weeks after the Hallucination 100 and I’m now just writing this race report. Not really sure why it took me this long but I think it’s because the race really has not sunk in until now. It almost seems like yesterday when I first heard about Ultramarathons and people running 100 mile races. I remember my response, “there is no way in hell I would ever run 100 miles, whoever does need to get their heads checked!” hahaha! Well I guess I better schedule my cat scan! Being my first finish, I don’t think it could have ended better!

Now obviously I would be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous about another DNF but I was. I was pretty good at masking that feeling weeks leading up to the race but a few days before it definitely showed. Ask Jess, she called me out a few times. But who wouldn’t be? I started training for this race the week after last year’s debacle! No one wants to fail at the same race 2 years in a row. So I did what I know how to do best, I had fun! I didn’t overly worry about mileage per week or how long my “long” runs were. I ran with my friends as much as I could and if I couldn’t get a friend, I took an ipod. I figured this approached would be my best bet not to over train and kill myself. I just wanted to get to the start line healthy.

Heading into the race I felt really good and confident that I would finish. I knew the course, it hadn’t changed. It was still a 6 loops of 16.7 miles with aid stations every 4 miles. Start/finish served as an station, Graces aid was at mile 4 and 12, then Richie’s Haven was at mile 8.  Now, I have done a few 50 milers in the past and I always know something always pops up. And I was right, 2 weeks out my pacer had to drop due to a foot injury. I panicked a little and made a few calls but to no avail. So what would I do? Obviously I’m not gonna drop, I’m way too stubborn for that. Do I keep asking for someone to pace? Or do I say “SCREW IT” and just run? I’m just there to finish right? You guessed right, I said SCREW IT! Just go out and have fun and run the way you know how to!

Fast forward to race day…… I couldn’t have asked for a better day! Low 70’s for the high and in the 40’s for the night. Starting line seemed to have a great field and a lot of fun people to run with. As the race started I just relaxed as much as I could and try to run slower than I did last year for the first lap. I started off with Court Lilly, one of my good friends and training partners, but that was for about 2 miles because he planned on running at slower pace than I did. As I made my way thru the field I made sure I talked to a lot of people and also made sure I showed my appreciation to the volunteers at the aid stations. At the end of the lap you could hear the music from the live band and also see horse shit on the trails. That’s how you would know when you were close to the start/finish. I came thru my first lap in 2:40 which was around 5 min slower than last year and I was in 7th. At the time was pretty comical, because I figured I would be around 15 min slower with the effort I was at. But I guess that was a good sign of what was ahead for me!

Heading into the 2nd lap I grabbed my headlamp and ipod. I knew I was gonna need the headlamp due to the time but I didn’t plan on using my ipod till the 3rd lap at the earliest. I figured if I took it I would have it if I really needed it. As it panned out I didn’t need it at all. I still made conversation with the runners I was around and made friends with the aid station peeps. I was also sticking to my plan of taking Gu’s every 45 min and refilling with Nuun every aid station. So far so good! About ¾ of the way thru the 16.7 mile loop it got dark enough to start using the head lamp. Guess I should have practice more with it cause I ate dirt quickly. Yes, I went down and hard! But I shook it off and laughed a bit and continued onward! End of 2nd loop was 2:45 and in 2nd, which I had no idea of.

3rd loop was nothing special except heading into the Grace aid station the first time I accidently put Gatorade in my bottle instead of water for Nuun but I just went with it. So I also made the decision to go ahead to stop using Gu’s and consume regular food. And the big shocker was when I headed into Graces that second time I saw Courts mom (she was awesome and practically at every aidstation) and she said I was in first!!!! She the first guy had to drop due to some unknown reason. I honestly could have gone without knowing that but now I was forced to race! Crap crap crap crap! I just wanted to relax and run but every runner know if they are in first, whatever race it is, the need to stay there at all costs! 3rd lap time was 3:00hrs.

Changed socks from swiftwick to feetures wool elite. (not my best idea)

4th and 5th lap were not so great to talk about except that I was getting slower, HA! 3:21 and 3:34 were the lap times.  Could have used a pacer but I had my tunes to get my by I guess. I was pretty impressed that I was able to stay away from the coke until lap 4.  My focus at this time was to stay running as long as I could, walk the hills but just keep moving forward!!!! Just before halfway of my 4th loop I started to feel a hot spot on my left big toe. So at Richie’s Haven aid I stopped and pulled my shoe and sock off and DANG what a freaking humongous blister!!! Doctored her up with some Vaseline and went along my way!

6th lap!!! I was almost there, just one more lap. It’s amazing after 83 miles and you find some way to pick your pace up! At this time I knew Jess would be out there doing her 50k and all the other races took off. So I was pumped not to be ALONE anymore! Just after headin out on my last loop I came upon the marathon runners which made me seem as slow as a turtle but it was so great to see them, plus I saw someone I knew which gave me a boost of energy! Saw Jess right before the first Graces aid, she could tell you I wasn’t very talkative at that point. Also saw her again right before Graces again for the second time and still I wasn’t very delightful! Eye of the tiger, I wanted to get to the end as soon as I could! I sooo ready to finish I barely even stopped to fill my bottle. The last 4 miles seemed brutal, but I ran all the hills I walked the previous laps. I took my headphones off and was listening for the band at the finish. When I could hear them I knew I was close, but it seemed forever! Up down Up down where is this music, when will I be able to smell the campfires from all the people camping?? BOOM!!! There the faint music was, I am ALMOST there! And all of sudden out of nowhere, the campsite appeared! I tried to put on the best smile I could and I ran until the end! I was DONE! 18:42 was the final time, which meant I ran the last loop in 3:19, faster than the my 4th and 5th loop! Not only did I finish but I finished first. Honestly I really don’t care about the first place, yes it’s nice, but I was more impressed that I came back from a horrible showing the year before and ran way beyond what I thought I could!


Not that I really expect a lot of people to read this but if you do this should show you anything is possible. Yes we fail and probably fail more than we succeed but when we do succeed its SOOOO WORTH IT!!!! Don’t give up, don’t ever give up!
PS... this was also Jess's first 50K and she rocked it!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Winter Running, 8 Tuff and such.........

Well its been awhile since I have posted on here and I wish I had more interesting stuff to post, but I dont! I was hoping I could start writing about putting in 100+ miles weekly or doing some type of awesome race in the mountains somewhere, but I cant. So I will write about my past few months as a mediocre runner with injuries and trying to make a comeback! Exciting right???!! While I may not have any noteworthy 'edge of your seat ' updates to share I have valued this time to rebuild the stablitity that I need in my running.

Ever since my 12 hr race in October I have been battling some hamstring problems. I had a few solid days right after the race when about a week after I started to have tightness in my left hammy. I have had previous problems before, but they never really turned into anything. This time was a little different. I had multiple runs where I was walking in the last mile of 6 mile or so run.  I decided to take a few days off but to no avail. I decided that I needed to do some active recovery, so I chose to start a relationship with an elliptical and foam roller. Did a pretty strict regimen of this for about 2 weeks which seemed to work  well! I was still experiencing a little tightness but I was able to run. I did let a friend's girlfriend, who recently graduated from PT school, have her way with me. After 30 minutes of PT school magic I was free of the aches and pains that seemed inescapable.  She stretched me for a good 30 min after a run and BAM no more problems! (knocking on wood.)

Since then I have kept my miles somewhat lower than usual, around 40 - 65 weekly. I have thrown in quite a few speed workouts to get ready for my annual 8 Tuff Miles race in St John VI. For those who dont know about it, its one hell of a race, the tuff part being an understatement for the massive mountain climb that is made for over half the race.  It starts at Cruz Bay (5ft above sea level) and climbs Center Line rd that reaches 999 ft at around 5 miles and then plummets to Corral Bay which is at sea level. Needless to say, it wreaks havoc on the ole get away sticks! Unforunately living here in the Nati, its hard to find hills that replicate anything similiar to those of St John. So coming up with a route is some what tricky. We do have a pretty solid 10 mile route we do one night a week as a group that runs up through Mt Adams and around a local park and we try to hit every big hill around. While the hills generally induce a sense of dread, I have come to value the persistence it takes to complete an intense hill workout. Elevation change is right around 2000ft, which is no joke. Keeping the run below 70 min is pretty "tuff."

I was also able to get a few local races in to get ready for 8 Tuff as well. In mid Jan I did the Topo 10 (actually 8) mile trail run at the  Devou trails. This was my first race under 50k since last years 8 Tuff. Man did it hurt! Not only from running hard but also twisting a ankle about 3/4 mile from the finish. Over all good race with an finishing time around 55 min and a baseball sized ankle to prove it.

Also got a 5 miler on road in on Feb 3rd in Centerville OH. Actually did this one last year but this year it was 20 degrees cooler at around 18 degrees! Felt pretty strong here and I was 2 sec faster than last year! With being wayyyyyyy colder, Ill take it! 5th overall at 27:27. It was def weird racing on roads again but Ill have to do it in the Islands, so it was good practice.

I have also nailed down a few ultras to my schedule this year. Hallucination 100 mile (re-try), also the ORRRC 50 miler at the end of June, looking to get at least another 50 miler and maybe a 50k in as well. With this increasingly busy schedule after 8 tuff  you will be relieved to hear that not only will my updates become twice as exciting as they are currently,but my mileage will become more exciting also.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Having left MI (Hallucination 100) with a bad taste in my mouth, I was yearning for another race. Having no idea what I wanted to run but all I did know was I wanted to test my mental side of things. Even though I DNF'd because of stomach issues, I still think I might have still completed it if I would have stuck with it. After doing some searching on ultra calendars, I decided on the Heart and Health 12 hr run. YEP! I would be running around a freaking 1.4 mile loop on a bike path at Voice of America Park. Why you might ask? Well for one who in the their right mind would wanna run for 12 hrs on a loop course. And I knew it would be easy for me to quit cause you would be close to the start/finish line the whole time. But I knew I couldnt quit. To be extra cautious, I made sure of that by having my parents drive me up there and then have Jessica pick me up at the end. This way if I wanted to quit I would have no where to go, so I might as well keep on chugging along! I had only one goal going into this race, JUST FINISH! (although I knew I wanted to get around 70 miles)

 I got up there pretty early to sign up. I figured I wouldnt see anyone up there I knew but actually came across David Riddle (coming off a DNF at UROC, he was just running 6hrs) and the Dave Corfman (did the mid west grand slam this year) to my surprise. After a quick breakfast snack and a bathroom stop, we headed to the start line. After a few prerace announcements about Riddle, Corfman and a guy named Vincent O'Sullivan ('84 olympian and eventual winner of this race) we were off. Corfman, Riddle and I ran together the first lap, then Corfman dropped back into his own pace. I decided to run with Riddle for the first hour and then drop back, which I did. I didnt plan to run that fast (7:15) that early but I felt like I wanted to hurt at the end. I know that sounds ridicolous but I know if I wanna run 100 milers I would have to endure pain, and that was what I was out to do! I also focused on nutrition since I believe the premature exit at Hallucination was partly due to my race day eating habits. So I made sure I was taking enough water and plenty of calories. Started as usual with mostly gu's until I couldnt handle the taste anymore. Toyed around with potatoes and chicken broth as well. Both seeming to sit well in my stomach, so those are both possible race day food for me.

As far as the run it self, it went pretty well I thought. I had a small lil meltdown around hour 5, just felt like I was hittin a wall and couldn't go any longer. Just thinking about continuing on for another 7 hrs was enough to make me come to a stand still. I just stood there for a bit and told myself "if your dumb, you gotta be tough!" Cause I was dumb enough to sign up for the race, I damn well be tough enough to finish it! I also knew I planned on using my ipod at about hour 6 as well, so that was a little uplifting too. Around this point the race director Chris Kist came out to run a few laps with me so that helped alot as well. During that part he told me that Jen Sprague (friend of mine) was coming up to do the 6 hour race, so I would have some company out there. So hour 6 came around and I changed my shoes again (also did that at 3 hr and 9 hr) and grabbed my ipod. Jen said she was gonna do a few laps then come and get me. She ran with me for about an hour around the 7 hr mark. Derrick Butler came up and said hi to us, so that was nice of him to go out of his way to do that. Also decided to run a bit with Corfman and a lady he was helping who was having some stomach issues. I ran/walked with them for 2 laps, just to mix it up a little. Legs were def feeling fatigued at this point. Hit mile 70 around the 11 hour mark, so decided I was going to take a mini break to stretch since I havent all day. About 10 min into my stretch break, Corfman came around and told me to keep moving cause he was gaining on me. So that was just enough to get me going again. Did another 2 laps at a very gingerly pace cause my feet and legs were destroyed. I ended up stopping around 11:55 cause I didnt want to have to walk back when it hit 12 hrs. I ended up with just shy of 74. Vincent ran 78 miles, good enough for the win.

Overall this was a very successful race for me! I did what I set out to do and that was to hurt! Got back my confidence in running long and being able to keep my food down. Having to DNF def put a me in my place a few weeks ago but now Im feeling good about running again. Hoping to recover a bit and run the Stone Steps (Dave Corfman is the race director) at the end of the month!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Hallucination DNF

Well I was putting off writing this and even thinking about not writing anything but I decided that I should. Although I am bummed about a DNF, I am not totally put off on thinking about my next possible 100 attempt. Being a Ultarunner you have to be mentally and physically tough, but you also have to be smart and know when enough is enough and being able to live to fight another day. Sometimes you just have to come to terms that every race will not always go well and even possibly they will go horribly wrong as it did for me. Dont get me wrong, I dont want any pity cause I know most of what happen was because of me. Now that its over and I had my day to be pissy and ticked off, I can go over some stuff that I believe led to my dismise this past weekend. Ill go over that in a bit but Ill go over the part of the race that I did get through.

The race started at 4PM on Friday afternoon. Getting to the start line about 30 min early, I started to see a few familiar faces which calmed the nerves alittle. Darris, Todd and Emily were some of those faces, so we made small talk. After about 10 min of that the race was about to begin and we all got quiet. As they race started it began as a slow "jaunt" through some rolling trails. A small pack of us (Jonathan Clinthorne-eventually the winner, Marc Melville- CR holder and then me) were running together. I was feeling pretty good but I knew the pace we were going at was quicker than I wanted and actually I think both of those guys said that as well. But never the less we kept the same pace and conversed with eachother. Aid stations went smoothly and I just kept getting my water bottle refilled with watered down Gatorade. I was also going with my plan on taking Gu's every 30 min but I was alittle weiry about this plan as I never consumed this much before. But for the first lap evcerything seemed to go as planned. Coming through the first lap (16.6miles) I was just behind Jon and Marc at 2hr and 30min. This was about 45 min faster than I really planned on coming through. YIKES!! Saw Jessica and the gang at the aid station which gave me a little boost of energy. As I left the aid station I made sure I grabbed my headlamp as I went out for my second lap. Jon and Marc got a little further ahead of me as I took my time in the aid station but I honestly didnt care. Headed out I was all alone and it was that way the whole time. About a mile into this lap my stomach was talking back to me. There was def some grumbleing and bubbling going on down there. I figured it was still just some nervousness and that it would pass. I couldnt have been more WRONG. After taking a few more gu's they started to come back up. Got through the next aid station where I grabbed some Coke and a PB&J sandwich but that didnt help either. Everything I was putting into me was coming right back out! Got to the last aid station before lap ended and I was VIOLENTLY throwing up. I knew it was bad when the aid station volunteer looked at me in horror when I was bent over tossing everything up. I took a seat and everything got blurry and I was dizzy. The volunteer looked at me and said you dont look so good. I told her I was done and I wouldnt go any further. This was only 30 miles in and I couldnt imagine doing another 70 miles in this condition. I pondered on just sittin at that aid station for 30-60 min to see if anything felt better but I figured I didnt want to continue on like that.

Just like any competitive person, I hated to DNF but I figured it was my best option at that time. But Im forced to look back at my training to see what I could have done differently. First thing I looked back on was my running itself and I believe I did enough to get me through this race. The only thing I think I should have done differently is that I could have had my 50 mile race alittle closer to the 100 miler. Being that my 50 was 2 months before, it pobably didnt help alot. But the main thing I think I did wrong was deciding to go on a vegetarian diet 2 months out. I figured I try it for a month and see how my running went and actually it went suprisingly well! But being new to that I wasnt eating the proper foods to give me the nutrients that I needed for running so much. I think my 30 mile run 2 weeks out was a tell tale sign that I wasnt getting enough calories or the right type of foods. So 2 weeks out I went back to eating chicken which messed with my stomach alittle. I just think I did to much too differently too close to to race day. This is something I should know NOT to do but I somehow ended up doing it.

Overall it was a disappointing race but something to think about and learn on. I promised myself to not let this get me down and I wont let it! Time to move on!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hallucination 100 training 2 weeks out!

We are just over 2 weeks out of my first attempt at a 100 mile race (Hallucination 100.) Not knowing exactly how to train for one, I think Ive done a "ok" job. When I say ok I mean Ive probably could have done some things different now looking back on my running log. But too late now, I just have to go with it. There is also a big life change for me as well. For the last few months Ive toyed with the idea of going vegetarian to see if it helps with training, and I actually made the jump on July 1st. Matt (my roomate) originally were just going to give up meat for the month of July, which I completed successfully. Matt only lasted about a week. After the month was up, I was noticing more energy and I didnt have that constant feeling of having something in my stomach everytime I ran. So now Im also 2 months without meat and loving every bit of it! Even though I gave up meat to be more healthy, I probably could work on my meals even more. For example last night I had Tofurkey Italian Sausages on a toasted wheat bun and topped it with cole slaw and Grippo's Bbq potato chips!!! Yeah, not so healthy but so worth it!!!! Ive been eating alot of rice, beans, veggies, and sweet potato's. It def makes you be more creative with your dinner options. Some people have asked me why I chose to do this when I also do Ultra's that normally demands you to consume a whole bunch of calories. Jessica has been a vegetarian for about 2.5 years now and sort of gave me the motivation to finally do it instead of just keep talking about it. Sompe people think I did it cause of her, which isnt entirely true. Of course its easier at dinner time for both of us to make one meal instead of 2 meals. But I was mostly concerned about the training aspect of it. Ok, enough talk about that.

Training for this race has been an adventure to say the least. Ive hit trails more now than I have ever done before and absolutely love it! Have been out to East Fork with the guys most Sundays and then at Mt Airy with Cohen (training for JFK) on weekday mornings. Ive done enough back to back long runs to make you sick! I tried to normally do these back to backs on my own so I could get use to being alone when Im tired. Jessican and I went out to the Black Hills of South Dakota for a week for a lil R&R. Didnt get a whole lot of running but did get some quality trail time in. We both summited Harneys Peak (7300 ft.) I ran all of it and Jessica ran/walk it. The Peak is the highest elevation between the Rocky Mnts to the Atlantic Ocean.

 View from Harney Peak looking NW, I believe.

We also got a good run in on the Mickelson trail in Hill City SD, which is at 5000 ft. Nice crushed gravel trail that is 100 miles long. I went about 8 miles and Jessica did 6. Jessica had a close call with a "wolf" like dog. She said it just stared her down and went off. Theres actually alot of wildlife out there, especially mountain lions! I did some research before we went out and it said they are more night life active, but after talking to a local running store they are very active all day long. SHIT!!!

  I didnt really do any speed at all. Im not totally confident yet to incorporate that into my longer runs. Maybe next year when I get a better handle on my training. Really the only speed thing I did was trying to "race" the east fork dirt days after running 22 miles the night before and running 1.5 hrs before the race. Make a long story short, I dropped out after 5.5 miles (first loop.) My body and mind were pretty fried. In hindsight I probably should have kept going no matter what my pace would have been. But whatever! I believe my training has been good enough to get me through at a decent time. Shooting for 24 hrs is my main goal but finishing would be acceptable for my first one.

Well thats pretty much all I have for now. Im sure you will hear more from me after the race!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Mohican 50

Writing a race report after a race usually gets me pretty excited. But here I am about 1.5 weeks out from Mohican and Im still unsure how I feel about my race. Finishing 3rd and taking home some prize money is nothing to be ashamed about! I thought I had a pretty solid race (compared to VT.) But I think I might have underestimated this course, thinking that VT 50 would have been tougher. Not the case AT ALL!

Jess and I headed up late evening on Thursday to meet Court and Emily at the state park. Reaching our campsite around 9 we were ready to relax and set up camp. We talked and bullshitted for a while with Court and his parents before bed. We got up around 8:30 AM on Friday and went on a little trot on the trails with the girls. Nice and easy for about 3 miles on some of the course. The rest of the day we just fiddled around in town (for breakfast and dinner), headed to the pool for a bit, and then headed to Mohican Adventures (Start/Finish) to pick up numbers and to drop off drop bags. Got back to campsite and Court and I went over a little race strategy with his mom. She, Courts dad, Emily and Jess would be our handlers on the course. We then got to bed a decent hour, but 3:45AM alarm came early.

We got to the Start around 4:15 and used the facilities and got our water bottles ready. Talked alittle bit with few of the other 100 and 50 milers getting ready to start at 5AM. Race got started on time and we were off! There were a few people that took off like crazy but Court and I remained leveled headed and kept to our plan. (if you probably couldnt tell Court and I planned on running together the whole way until one of us couldnt hang) We did probably start faster than we anticipated but thats normal, with the nerves and the adrenaline pumping! First couple of miles were in the dark and we made use of our headlamps. Few guys out there were with out them and I have no idea how they made it with out breaking an ankle because the trail was pretty rocky in places. We got through the 1st aid station with no problems, we both topped of our water bottles and continued on. The next aid station (firestation)  was alittle bit of a haul about 6 miles. We finally got to see the girls and Courts parents. We dropped off our headlamps and I grabbed some food. I was def determined to work on my nutrition on this race. The next part of the trail was probably the hardest section, there was alot of up and down and also a part where you ran up this creek bed jumping from down limb to down limb like a cat. That creek ran you into a waterfall that had you climbing up tree roots that were about 10 ft tall. Talking about a slowing your pace down! We ended up seeing our crew again before heading down the damn(see pic) to our next aid station. We hit the covered bridge aid station in high spirits, getting some fluids and food. Getting to the next aid station at mile 21-ish seemed like it took forever! Alot of this trail was covered with pineneedles which seemed to pad the trail and make you feel like you had some bounce in your step. We came to our next aid station and they told us it as only 5 miles to the start. At this point I was alittle worried cause I was figuring we would finish the 1st loop (26.7 miles) at around 3:45 but it was gonna be closer to 4:00. So we both said screw going for time, just enjoy the rest of the race. This section was a def tough, pretty rocky trails and alot of up and downs, especially towards the end of the loop. Finally we got to the road where I knew it would take us to the start. Saw the 1st place 100 miler in front of us and then we saw Courts dad takin pics. We finally got done with our 1st loop and glad to be there and see our peeps! Jess got me reapplied with BodyGlide and got me my ipod (didnt plan on using it but just incase.) Court and I got our nutrition together and on we went for our 2nd (shorter) loop.

Second loop started a little rough, Court and I both were feeling our legs pretty good and having to climb a bit didnt help either. Court took a nasty spill and thought he broke his wrist. He stopped for a minute and so did I to make sure everything was ok. He thought he was gonna have to drop but didnt! (MAN SHIT) Finally got the next aid station and refilled bottle and took food. At this point I was def going through my fluids alot quicker. I concentrated on taking coke as well for a little sugar boost. The next part of the trail was to the firestation again. This felt like it to forever as well! Court fell alittle behind in this section. At one point I thought I might be going the wrong way cause I didnt see anyone and it just seemed like it took so long. Ended up seing courts dad in the woods taking pics, so that got me little wound up. Got up to the aid station and saw Jessie and she asked me if I needed anything and I responded with "I need new legs" haha. Later after the race she said I didnt look to happy at this point! As I was leavin the aid station I looked back to see if Court made it but didnt see hime, so I figured from then on I would have to get through this on my own. This next part of the race was shorter than the 1st loop cause we didnt have to through the section with climbing the roots and creek. It was only 2 miles until the covered bridge aid station, so I got there pretty quick. When I arrived at there I was suprised to see the 2nd place 50 miler. He was an older gent but quick. Once he saw me coming in he took off. I didnt worry much, so I got my things together with my nutrition. This aid station was also where my drop bag was so I decided to change my shirt. I was planning on changing my shoes but decided against it. I remained calm and headed out of aid station cause I knew I was gonna catch the 2nd place eventually. Which I did about a mile after the aid station, he told me good job and I the same. I was really focusing on drinking and consuming some calories, I knew I would need them towards the end. Got to the final aid station and topped of my bottle and grabbed a PB&J sqaure and some coke and took off. If I could just hold on I would finish 2nd! Well as quickly 2nd place came, it went quickly as well too! I got passed about 3.5 miles from the finish.... Total mind fuck! I felt defeated but I was just pluggin along to get to the finish. The last 2 miles was just me on auto pilot. Finally got to the road and felt a little boost of energy but not much. Saw Emily and Courts parents at the top of the road cheering. Made my way past them to the finish! Crossed the line with my watch saying 7:58. As I crossed the line the announcer said 6:50????? I was like uh? Well the official results came out and it had me just over 8:00:50. So I say sub 8! ha!

Overall I felt better than I did at the VT 50. It was def a more technical course on a hotter day as well. Still learning on what Im doing out there and trying to piece together a great race. Next up is the Hallucination 100 miler Sept 7. Alot of work needs to be done for this!

Thursday, May 17, 2012


Have to say this was one tough course at Gnaw Bone! This was my first 50K and I will say that my second one will be easier, hopefully.  Was completely happy with my race, felt in control most of the time and felt strong considering only having 6 days of rest after running (paced the 3:10 group) the full marathon at the Flying Pig. Ran a 4:27 on a course that was 75% trail running and 25% trail blazing! Was told I got the course record but not 100% sure about that yet.

We headed up to Brown County State Park early Friday afternoon.  Got up to the cabin about 3 ish and headed out for a shake out run. Then headed to packet pick up at the start/finish line and headed to the grocery store for some food. Got back to the cabin about 6 and by that time everyone else was showing up. We had a total of about 15 people that were participating in mostly the 100k relay but also the Marathon and 10K races. After dinner I had a few beers along with a lot of water. Didn’t get great sleep had to sleep in the bathroom on the floor to get some rest cause people were still up partying till 1 AM. Court, Smitty and I got up at 5:00 AM to get to the start by 5:45 for a 6:15 start.

First .75 mile was flat and on a gravel road that ended onto an uphill trail that wasn’t exactly a runnable trail. It climbed about 2 miles on an empty like creek bed with a lot of mud and down trees that I had to jump.  Legs felt a little tight during this part which had me worried a tad but as soon as we got to the top we got onto a well packed trail that I was able to actually run on. I had a 50 miler running along with me for about 2 miles until he dropped off, which left me in the lead all by myself.  Early on I was trying to concentrate on taking a lot of fluids in, which I thought I did an excellent job the whole race. Made sure to take Gu’s at the aid stations as well. The next few miles were not that exciting but I do remember quite a few steps on this course that were unexpected. I know I was moving at a good clip but was just trying to stay relaxed at the same time cause I figured my legs would soon become fatigued. Around mile 18 I saw Courts( he was doing marathon) mom at the aid station. She blurted out something about just having fun on the next part, which I wasn’t exactly sure by what she meant, so I just smiled and gave a big thumbs up DUDE!!!! Well I soon would realize what she meant. I was following the pink flags that I was supposed to follow and just like that the pink flags dove right off the trail into the woods. No visible trail was there! WTF!!!!! I sort of stopped and recollected my thoughts and wondered if someone got on the course and fucked with the flags. But with no one being around for clarification I continued on following pink ribbons on the trees. This went on for about 2 miles until I came up to spot where I couldn’t see the next ribbon. I stopped looked around and then I started to run back to the last ribbon. I stopped there looked around for I know was about 5 min. Still couldn’t see any more ribbons I remember yelling  “SERIOUSLY???”  It wasn’t a sec after I yelled that I looked up this huge ridge and saw another ribbon.  On top of being frustrated I now have to climb this huge ridge…… when I say climb I mean pulling myself up with roots and trees and basically anything I could get my hands on.  Finally got to the top of this ridge but the hill kept on going up. Got to a set of steps in which I decided to just walk up. At the top of those steps I saw Courts mom again with a huge grin on her face just laughing and she asked me “How was that?” My answer… “BULL SHIT!!!!!” The next 2 miles were on paved roads which I was ecstatic about, I was finally about to open stride and feel like a runner again!!! Hit another aid station and filled water bottle up with ½ Gatorade and ½ Water.  Pretty much up till the last 2 miles the rest of the course was on horse trails that were semi muddy and uneven but was still able to keep pace. Quads and hammys were definitely starting to go slowly. Any slight misstep set them off pretty good. About mile 29 the trail ended at a huge ass downhill that resembled a ski slope. The downhill ended into a creek which was the last mile of the race. Water was shin high and hard to move through but for some reason it was refreshing. I started to see more and more people (relay runners) in the creek so I knew I was getting close to the finish. Headed off the bank of the creek and saw the huge red barn that was near the finish line so I picked pace up and finished hard. Coming across the line at 4:27 the lady working the shoot looked at me and said “wow we weren’t expecting you for another 30-45 min. I took that as a compliment until she asked “are you sure you hit all the aid stations?” She then proceeded to call and make sure I did. After about 15 min they finally approved my victory and gave me my bone and metal! They did apologize for not believing me and of course I forgave them.

Overall a solid effort that I am happy about! Now for the 50 miler!