8 Tuff

8 Tuff

Monday, November 7, 2011

Winter Training and Races

Well about a month and few weeks after VT50 I am back to 70 mile weeks and running every day. Legs def took some time to get back to somewhat normal. And still to this day I still feel my legs getting tired more quickly than normal. So I'm taking my time on easy runs and making sure I'm running EASY. But I can't wait to be doing some quality workouts for some races in the winter. So far my schedule is the Thanksgiving Day race. I will also be doing the Frostbite 5 miler on New Years Day. One day after my g'day. Hopefully I can keep it under control on the 31st. Then on to 8 Tuff Miles in the end of Feb on St. John in the Virgin Islands. I am also looking to do a 50k sometime as well.

Even though I have a few races that I'm going to do but I'm concentrating mostly on 8 Tuff. We actually have about 30 people going down from the tri-state area. We basically go down on Thursday and race on Saturday and then we party balls the rest of the time. Last year I did a have a pretty good race considering I have never done it before. I finished 4th overall with a time of 51:38. Now for most of you reading this and doing the math it comes out to a 6:10 pace. Which isn't all that fast normally, But this course is far from ordinary. It's a 8.6 mile race with about 1500 feet of climbing. And thats in the first 5 miles! Yes it's pretty much straight up hill and then the last 3.6 is straight downhill that kills your quads. It actually took longer to recover from this race than it did from my marathon. But most of all it's just a hell of a good time.

As far as the other races go they will be just tune ups. The Thanksgiving Day race will be interesting cause I haven't done hardly any good speed work. This race usually goes bad for me. But as usual I will give it a go and try to break 35 min which I never have done.... I know SAD but ohwell. And as for the Frostbite 5 miler I should have some quality runs behind me and hopefully beat my last year time. Which right now I can't really remember what I ran maybe high 26 min I think. But I'm pretty sure I can get that.

Training has been going well too. A bunch of us that are going to 8 Tuff have been meeting 2 days a week. Usually on Wed. In the PM and we run up through MT Adams trying to get some good hills in. Then we also meet on Sunday mornings and do a longer run. These runs have been a staple to my runs. I have been looking forward to these runs for sometime now. Don't get me wrong I would still do these runs on my own but it's sooooo much nicer having some guys with you. Typically on Sundays we have double digits running and most of them are legit runners that can really move. I'm pretty much on the slower end of the group but it's very helpful to run with faster guys. Couldn't ask for a better group of guys to run with!

Well I'm pretty excited for the next few months and ready for the cooler weather. I will try to get a post in after the races with results..... Hopefully GOOD results! Till then......

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

VT 50 Done and Gone!

I promised that I would follow up with a race report for my first 50 miler. Sorry it took so long. Had a nice long lazy week this past week, should have done it then. But here it is, Enjoy!

First of all I would like to thank Amanda for coming along with me on this journey. I know it wasnt the most coziest vacation ever, cause we ( when I say we I mean "I") decided to camp out the whole time on the road and in VT. We left early Friday morning around 6 AM and let me tell you I never seen so much rain in my life! Damn! It rained the whole time from Newport all the way to Geneva, NY. This was our stop for Friday evening. We staid at a little camp ground just about 10 min outside downtown Geneva. Amanda did a tri here a year or two ago and she thought it would be fun to stop by. As soon as we arrived we set up camp and went for a short 4 mile run, where I felt alittle dead in the legs but nothing not to be expected. It was a nice little run on some backroads. We decided to go to a local little pub that she ate at while up here for her race. I believe it was called Patricks or something Irish. But it was a nice little establishment and got my fill with wings, burger and a few beers. Got to bed somewhat early and up again by 8 to get on the road to VT.

This drive was alittle better. Overcast skies but not as rainy. As we hit the state line of VT I remember looking over to Amanda and saying "I didnt think VT was this hilly!" I mean I expected it to be some mountain ranges but mostly rolling hills. Boy was I wrong! It almost seemed as if we climbed the whole time we got into VT to our destination at the Ascutney Ski Resort in Brownsville. We finally arrived at the Resort after a few misadventures due to some road detours due to the affects of Hurricane Irene a few weeks before. We checked in pretty quickly and chatted with one of Amandas , Bob, from Cincinnati. Then we made our way to the Running Bear Camp Grounds. Once again set up camp quick and went for another short jaunt. Legs felt alittle looser but still heavy, just from the nerves im guessing. We later drove around and found a little pizza place to eat at. Had a steak hoagie, fries and a coke. I just tried to fill up on calories. Headed back and went to bed around 7:30 - 8 oclock-ish wgich is pretty early for me but since I had a 4 AM wake up call, i found it appropriate. Actually slept pretty well but 4 AM came quickly.

A quick shower and a peanut butter sandwich later, we were on the road to the start. Upon a arrivle I checked in again and asked about my drop bags. The answer I got was not what I was looking for. I was suppose to bring my drop bags to them the day before. Def a mistake on my past for not asking and just assuming. For most people this would have sucked but since I had Amanda there, she was able to take the bags to the appropriate aid stations. Once again, THANK YOU AMANDA!!! I would have been in a world of hurt if it was not for her. After calming my nerves and one last restroom break, it was almost time for the start. There was quite a few mountain bikers racing as well so they were starting in waves before the 50 miler runners started. (YES this was a mountain bike race as well as running.) Next thing I knew we, runners, were called to the start. After a few quick tips and remarks from the starter, we were off!

Basically in the begining I just tried to pick out a person/group that looked pretty relaxed and just tagged along. So I picked two guys talking and just ran with them. Looking at the runners in front of me, I noticed a few guys just flying. I mean it seemed as if they were taking off for a 5k! At this point I thought to myself "Dang, these guys are SERIOUS!!!" But I tried not to let it get me down. I just stuck to my plan and tried to relax as much as I could. About a mile into the race the group grew to about 6 guys and we also hit the first hill. Not just any hill, it was a hill that climbed for a good 2.5 - 3 miles! it was on a crushed gravel road so it wasnt terribly horrible, but it was a nice introduction that basically said "F-U!"

The first trails came up about mile 4 which was also the first aid station. Decided to skip that station and kept on going with the group. I was on a plan to take a GU about every 30 min. I also had my handheld water bottle filled with Nuun, so I was sipping on that. First aid station came up about mile 8 and it came up fast. I decided to refill water bottle but I couldnt get the top off and had a volunteer help me out. This is when I lost contact with the group and was basically by myself. I tried to remain calm and I did. I told myself I tould make up ground in the end. (at least thats what I kept telling myself.) So I just tried to enjoy the scenery and remain on pace. Miles past fairly quick and the first drop bag station came up at mile 12. Saw Amanda pretty quick and she refilled my bottle, which she also had trouble loosening the top, and refilled belt with gels. After I took off from that aid station, we dove into more trails. Now I mentioned before how Hurricane Irene hit this area a few weeks before. Well one would think the trails would have dried out alittle. NO! it was probably the muddiest race I have ran. There was multiple parts of the course that basically were 100-200 meters long that was just pure slop! I mean it felt as if your shoes were being sucked off your feet type of slop! The mountain bikers were getting stuck in it so it was hard to past them. At first I was trying to finesse my way through but after a few misteps I just plowed through as best as I could.

After being by myself for a few miles, I came up along a runner seeming to be struggling. He introduced himself as George and he decided to pick up his pace to stay along side of me. We ran together for a few miles, which was nice I guess. This was his 2nd VT 50, and he lived in the area. He explained to me the blue like tubes attached to every tree was a suction devise to get maple off of the trees for syrup. He was def pretty knowlegable about the area. He did have a flaw and it was that he wouldnt shut up. It was nice for a mile or so but then it just got plain annoying. Im not trying to be mean but sometimes thses people just talk about nothing pertaining the current situation. George, if your reading this, your nice guy but I really dont need to hear about your past GI issues!! So I decided to put in a small surge and left Georgy boy behind. Now looking back its sort of funny, but about a mile or two after I put the little surge in a girl with a skirt ran up along side me. She was all smiles and her stride looked effortless. "how you feeling?" she asked. "not bad, you?" I replied. "GREAT" is was she came back with a took off ahead. Almost seems as if Karma came around to me after complaining about George. It got me a little frazzled but I recouped and kept on chugging along. By this time we hit another aid station around 27 and this is where the 50ker's joined us. So now we were with bikers and 50ker's the rest of the way to the finish. One thing I did notice at this station was two guys that took off at the very start were getting into a van. This made me feel good about not going out to fast. Also at this point in the race I knew this is the farthest I have ever ran, so I did get alittle excited just from that.

The next aid station was about mile 32 and it was the 2nd drop bag station. I saw Amanda pretty quickly with my bag. At this point I was just covered in mud. So I decided to change my shoes, socks and shirt. I reapplied body glide (thank god) and refilled my nutrition needs. The next couple miles were less entertaining, I was mostly by myself and passing alot of bikers and 50kers. I was mainly concentrating on taking my gels when I needed to and keep on drinking to make sure I made it. Didnt want to let anyone down!!! Gels were def getting harder and harder to take. My stomach was handling them just fine but just the act of getting it down there was a task. So at some of the aid stations I was taking a half gel and eating a pb&j and sippin on coke. Boy oh Boy..... let me tell you about the coke. I never trained with it but once I took a sip of it I was hooked! It was a instant pick me up! From there on out I was looking forward to coke!

About the 45 mile mile mark I hit a wide open field and noticed two guys infront of me about 400 meters away. At first I just thought it was a couple 50ker's so I didnt make a big deal of it, but as I got closer I realized it was one of the guys that I started out with and his pacer (a pacer was a person who could run the last 10 miles with you.) This was a huge encouragement for me, I picked the pace up alittle and just tried to pass him with as much authority as I could. I just wanted him to think there was no way he could hang. I did just that, even though I was hurting the whole time. The next and last aid station seemed to take awhile to get to. it was right about mile 48. This point of the race was on a back road that people lined and cheered. I remember asking a lady "where in the hell is that last aid station?" she laughed and said right there and pointed. I turned my head and saw it perched up on a nice little incline. "S.O.B" I only had 2 more mile sto go but I was hurting. Got in and out of that aid station with just some water and sip of coke, again!

The last 2 miles were on some awesome trails. Made me think about all those articles I read about trails in Colorado and how beautiful they are and how I wish I could be out there running them. I could say that I almost shed a tear, but that aint manly! So ill just say I was just very happy I was almost done and so proud of all the hard work I put in. I could here the announcer at the finish and even though I couldnt see it I knew I was close. I finally made my way through some trails and out on top of a ski lope I emerged! "S.O.B!" again!!! I have to go down this whole ski slope on uneven ground and my quads feel as if they were ready to bust out of the skin! I made my way down as quick as possible with a smile I tried put on so it didnt look I was in too much pain. At the top of a little bunny slope I saw Amanda there cheering and yelling, so I tried to kick it in. I use the term "kick" loosely though, it was more of a gentle pick up. And finally crossed the line in 7 hours and 57 min. 27 min slower than I wanted but still very happy!

Overall it was a GREAT experience and Im glad I can write this for you all to read. I do alot of races every year and alot of them are for granted. The way I felt after this race made me thankful more than ever to be able to part-take in these events. I hope we all realize how lucky we are to be able to do the things we love and anytime we want. When dont realize it until we lose that freedom. Ill stop rambleing now....... Until next time, Run Hard!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

2 weeks out from VT50!

Just wanted to write a little update about how my training has come along since my last post. Even though I dont think I have any followers at the moment, but oh well! Ill just keep typing and one day followers will come I guess.

So Im currently 2 weeks out from my big adventure. The VT 50 miler in Brownsville, VT! Have to say I have never been more relaxed going into a race, than I am now. Im guessing its the lack of structure in my training. Im basically just piling on the miles and hoping it works. I have never done a ultra before so I have really no clue on how to train. I can say that I have been more consistent with hile mileage weeks than I have ever been. 70 - 80 mile weeks for sometime now! I find this very comforting when I look back at my training. I have also made a improvement in my nutrition plan and have actually practiced it. Even though Amanda will say Im not even close to the amount I should be taking and shes right. I will need to take more on raceday and I plan on it! Been using GU and Nuun on my long runs. Body seems to like it, and has worked well with it.

This past past weekend was a rough one. Did 22 miles on Friday at Eastfork on the trails. Took about 3 hours. It was a perfect day for a run, cooler and a good breeze. Felt good and strong even at the end. It was a good confident booster for me! Then on Sat morning I did 20 miles on roads through Cinci, Cov and Newport. Legs were really tight for the first 5 miles, but started to loosen up as the run went on. Ran slower than I have in a long time but I was just wanting the miles. Took a ice bath that night, but water in house is still warm. Yes the cold water is warm. So the ice melts quicker than usual. So really a 22lb bag of ice got me 10 min. In the winter I can get 20-25 min easily with that size! Oh well, I also been wearing my SKINS more too.

This week started taper for me. I think my body and especially my mind needs it. One thing I have noticed though is my motivation was lacking for awhile. Dont know if its been all the miles or what. But it was getting harder and harder to get out the door. Amanda had her Ironman 2 weeks ago(which she did awesome in) and that reignited my motivation to a new high. Just watching all those people finish a marathon after a 2.4 mile swim and 112 mile bike is just insane! Basically all I need to think about is that and I can get my ASS out of bed for a 10 mile run. As of now I really cant wait to get out the door! Plus I just got a new pair of Saucony Kinvaras today (my 5th pair) so thats always a good reason to get a run in.

Thats it for now and hopefully I get another post in before the race!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

5 Weeks out From VT 50

Am I ready for the VT 50? Im not sure. Will I ever be ready? Im not sure. Simple questions with simple answers. I have not a clue really what Im doing as far as training. No real plan, just going along with whatever I feel is necessary. I have yet hit anything longer than 20 miles. But Im doing "longer" runs back to back. So I feel like im getting the training I need as far as the running on tired legs goes. Ive yet gone 20 back to back though. Ive been doing the first day on roads then hitting up East Fork trails for the second day. And usually the second day mileage is 3 -4 miles less than the day before. Since Ive posted last I have been sick which didnt put me on the sidelines to long but did force me to go slower than usual and go shorter. But since then I have picked things back up.

2 weekends ago I did a 19 miler on Sunday and then came back with a 15 miler on Monday at EF. It was a good 2 day workout for me and pretty much my first "legit" back to back long run. I was alittle sore and dehydrated after Sundays run but was able to comeback and get a good slower run in on the trails on Monday. Ive been practicing alot with my handheld water bottle, which I think I have adapted to. Plus I like it having it out there with me.

This past weekend I did the 3rd anniversary beer mile at Roth Park. For those who do not know what a beer mile consist of, its 4 laps around a 400 meter track. And you start with chugging a beer and running a lap, and you repeat this 3 more times. So yes you chug 4 beers! I didnt get much mileage in that day but it was an awesome race. If I knew how to post a pic in this I would def post a pic of my outfit. But just think Top Hat with White buttom down shirt with bowtie and a tuxedo thong!!! YEP THATS RIGHT! Think about it again!!! haha. But I did manage to to have a 4 min PR (9:26) and did not "ralph" this time!!! But on Sat I did do the Annual Brian Rhone 5k run at NKU (my old college.) Ran a 16:26 which I was def surprised by since I have not focused on speed at all. So that was a good feeling. On Sunday morning I met up with the guys at Awakenings at 8 AM and did a 17 mile run. It was alot faster than I was wanting to go (6:40 ish pace) but it was a good simulation of running fast on tired legs. Came back on Monday morning at did a 14 mile run at a much slower pace. Legs were def alittle trashed. So this weekend I was happy with the training.

As I type this Im getting ready for a trip down the Blue Ridge Mountains in Tenn. and N.C. with Court Lilly (training partner.) Not sure of the elevation change but I know its gonna be a good run. I believe its 24 miles total and pretty much all trail. Pretty much the training run I need to get ready for this VT 50. So Im looking forward to this weekend.

Eating is still a task I need to work on. I have done alittle better but still need to focus on eating more and refueling the body for more longer runs. Maybe I wont feel as tired towards the end of these runs. Plus I need to focus alittle bit more on the nutrition I will be doing on the day of the race. Trying to decide on GU Brew or NUUN. But hopefully the next time I post I will have this all down and ready to tackle VT. Until then.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Trails Trails Trails

I dont know if it could get any more hotter than it has been lately here in the Nati! Calling for some serious heat this next coming week and plus its been just as hot the last couple of weeks. Uping my mileage too during this heat has been almost unbearable but it makes it so much more important to hydrate and make sure I eat right. Recently I have been taking my hand-held water bottle with me on my runs, even though the guys I run with make fun of me. So I really have no problem hydrating but the eating part is not my best attribute. Ask Amanda!! haha. Shes constantly reminding me to eat and consume more than I have been doing. I feel bad though cause I normally try to remind myself to eat while at work but sometimes we get busy with customers or store related stuff I forget. I know its a huge part of training and I need to start taking it more seriously!

I think I have made up my mind on what 50 miler I am doing. Its called the Vermont 50 (trail) on Sept 25th. Its up in Brownsville VT. Heard its pretty beautiful up there around that time. All I need to do is reg. now. I do have to admit I am a little hesitant about it cause I never ever ran that far before. 26.2 being the furthest. Scratch that, I just went ahead a Registered!!! Better start hitting the trails!!

Speaking of trails I actually have been running them at least once a week. 2 weeks ago I met my buddy Court (and avid runner and even more avid trail runner) out at East Fork State Park. He grew up running these trails so I thought who else better to run with than someone like him. Really having no idea what to expect from the trails, you would at least think i would wear trail shoes BUT no I didnt! Had my hardly used Adidas Bostons light weight trainer on. When Court saw this, he looked at me and just laughed. He didnt say a word but I knew his laugh meant...... "Your Screwed!" These trails are single track mountain bike trails, so there isnt alot of flat ground to run on. It actually wasnt that bad. It hadnt rain in a couple of days, so it wasnt muddy at all. We ended up running somewhat easy for about 11 miles. I had a good first impression of the trails.

The next week I met him and a couple other guys out at the Cincinnati Nature Preserve. Once again still in my Bostons cause I felt good in them last time. These trails were somewhat wider and more manicured. There was some wet spots but nothing to get worried about. These trails were way more hillier than the ones at EF. But once again we took it easier and we did 12 miles! Another good run on some trails.

This past Sunday I did race the East Fork Back Pack Run that was 10.8 miles (even though Court said it was def more than 10.8 miles.) Yes I did it in my Bostons!!!  I drove there with Amanda. Met up with Court and a few others there. Did a 2 mile warm up on trails. The race started straight uphill on a road. Lasted about 1/4 mile before you dove on to the trails. It was a 2 lap course. I found myself leading right off the line. I figured what better way to learn to race on the trails than to lead my first one!!! Stupid Idea! Started off probably alittle too fast. But I lead the whole first loop with Court and another guy right on my heels. Which in my mind went by pretty quick. Court was pretty much being a aid to me and letting me know when turns and creeks would come up. After the first loop, Court passed me and didnt look back. I made a effort to stay with him as long as I could. But after the all those people that ran on it after us the trails got pretty muddy!! When I say muddy I mean MUDDY! To a point that I had to alsmost stop on some turns just so I wouldnt fly head first into a tree! But yes its my fault for not wearing trail shoes. But after Court passed me the guy that was also hanging on actually fell off. So I was in second all alone the rest of the race. My pace did suffer from the mud but I was happy with my race. Finished 2nd with a time of 1:13:23. My prize....... a free pair of TRAIL SHOES!!! hahaha.

So the last few weeks my body has been responding to the trails. Not always good but not always bad either. I just have to get more time on the trails. Im also trying to maintain some speed also by still keeping up on track workouts.

Other than running life is good! Off to hit the trails again....... well I might wait till it cools down first!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

50... WHAT??!?!?!

Before I go off and talk about what I really want to talk about, I guess I should do alittle intro to myself. My name is Marc and I live in Newport KY. I have been a runner for many of years. I ran cross country and track in high school with mild success. I also ran for NKU but decided I liked the college party life rather than the student athlete life. As of right now I work for Bob Ronckers Running Spot in Newport. I do a bit of running still. Still trying to stick my nose in some competitive races here and there. I race any where between 5k's to Marathons. I usually get my ass handed to me on all levels! hahaha but I still love every minute of it!

So why blog? I decided to try it out since I have a few friends that to do it. And I read them all the time. I decided I really just wanted to blog about my training and races. I want to try to leave my personal life out of it, but I will probably do a little life bantering here and there.

Last weekend Amanda and I traveled up to Mohican State park in Loudonville OH. Its between Columbus and Cleveland. We were set to pace her friend Emily and her husband Todd for the 100 mile trail race. 4 loop course.  We were not going to do the whole 100 but pace them the last 47 miles. Why you might ask? Who the fuck knows!!! I dont think we really knew what we were getting into when we said OK! You can say we are crazy, cause I never ran more than 26.2 miles ever and that was on road! Trails def tear your leg apart alot faster than roads. Emily and Todd started about 5 AM on Sat morning (6-18). We left Newport about 11 AM and reached the park around 2 PM. We were expecting them to come around the 53 mile mark around 5-6 PM. So we decided to pull up a park bench and relax. We were watching runners who were racing the Marathon race and also the 50 mile race come through. There were also some 100 miler races coming through the check point too. As the time passed we were so anxious to see Emily and Todd come out of the woods. At one point I even think Amanda was shaking cause she was excited and nervous! I on the other hand was pretty relaxed. But as the minutes ticked away, there was no sign of them. Amanda started to get worried. "What if something happened, what if they got hurt?" Not such a odd question especially listening to some of these people racing. Supposely the last 2 miles of the loop were straight up and down a huge hill. Instead of zig zaging up the hill the race director decided screw that idea and take the trail right up the side of it. Well as time passed Amanda suggested for me to get something to eat, since I didnt eat the much the whole day. So we made our way up to our drop bags for me to get the keys to the car when Amanda spotted Emily and Todd. But it was good. Todd seemed to be fine but Emily was limping and also crying. As they came through the check point Todd was just shaking his head. They couldnt go any further. Amanda was consoling (sp?) Emily telling her its a good idea to just stop cause they have and Ironman coming up in Wisconsin. Even though it was tough for them to swallow the idea of quiting, they did.

So after driving all the way up there Amanda and I came up with a few options. We could get back in car and drive home, We could go for a short run and come back and drink beer and watch runners come through for the next couple of hours, or we could try to find someone to pace. We decided that we would try to find someone that needed a pacer. at this point we also decided we wouldnt do the 47 miles that we expected to do earlier. So we told eachother that we would just run one loop with someone which would put us at 23-24 miles. Soon after we saw CHUCK come through the check point all smiles. (unlike others coming through, everyone else looked like the walking dead!) We asked him if wanted a pacer. He accepted us for one loop cause he actually had another pacer for the last loop. So he finished getting fueled up at the aid station and we were on our way!

As we started we made some small talk and told him a little about ourselves. As did he. He was a triathlete, just like Amanda. So they had a alot to talk about for the first few miles. Pace was slower than what we are used too, But SHIT this guy is on mile 60 of a 100 mile race. So for him he was going pretty good. After Amanda and I got use to the pace, it was alittle easier to accept. We were walking the uphills and running everything else. We made it throught the first aid station with no problems. I tried a piece of pizza to see how it would sit. (Cause Im thinking about my own ultra race soon!) After leaving the aid station Chuck began having some problems with cramping in his shin. At one point he curled up in a ball in the middle of the trail to stretch. Amanda massaged him alittle to get it loose. But to no avail he still had problems the whole way to the next aid station 6 miles away. Walking a pretty big chunk of it. At the aid station, chuck sat down and got his camekl back refilled. I had some potato soup and Mt Dew and some chips, once again just testing the waters! We had a hard time getting Chuck out of the seat. He just wanted to sit there for a bit, but his body temp was dropping. So he got his ass up and back on the trail we went. This section went a little better Chuck got some Advil and took it. Amanda harped on him about staying hydrated and taking in calories. So he started to feel a little better towards the next aid station. This aid station was awesome, had some good pump up music. I had 2 pieces of pizza, gummybears and Mt Dew! And then we were on our way to end of the loop. This part was pretty awesome. Chuck really came around! He was back to running everything but the uphills. And I think he was even running faster than he has the whole time we were with him! I asked him if he wanted to slow down cause of the last 2 miles (what I was talking about earlier) and he responded with "NO." So we got the the final hill and it did suck! But Chuck tackled it and destroyed it. We got to end of the loop and he was still smiling!! He thanked us and his wife told us we were a gift from God or something like that.

This whole adventure was probably one of the best running experiences I have had! It reignited a fire that I havent had since Cleveland in May. I am now searching for a 50 mile race of my own coming up. Dont think Im exactly ready for a 100 just yet. Ill still do smaller races too but I think I need a change of pace, literally! I have been talking to a local Ultra runner name David Riddle (who just qualified for the US 100K team to race in the Netherlands this fall, so hes a legit bad ass) about what he thinks. He suggested JFK 50 in November or a race in the North Face Endurance Challenge which has races all over the country through out the year. I have not decided yet but I will hopefully make up my mind in a week or so. Getting in shape for this will make me be in pretty high mileage, probably 80+ miles per week. Which means not a whole lot of time for goofing off and partying and if you know me, thats a damn shame!! Until next time!