Saturday, December 10, 2011

2011 Cheese & Sauerkraut 10 miler

Temperature was 19F today, but the wind was not bad.  After the 5.2 mile warm up, we had 5 minutes to spare. I consulted with Phil about what time to write down.  I wasn't feeling like I wanted to work extremely hard but decided to predict 1:07 even though I ran 1:03:50 last year.   I took off my watch (none allowed) and quickly used the bathroom.  We started promptly at 8:30 am.  There were 4 of us running close together for the first 2 or so miles.  I pulled ahead a bit before we turned on the road where we had to run down and turn around.   I passed a couple runners and then was in second place.  The guy in first (Kevin) was pretty far ahead of me and his twin brother (Erik) was behind me.  I completed the first loop feeling pretty strong. 

The second loop went well until about the last 2 miles, my legs were starting to feel fatigued and sore so I was having to work to keep the same pace.  I didn't feel like I fell off the pace too bad and had pulled far enough ahead of Erik I didn't worry about him catching me, but would have been nice to have someone push me for the last couple miles.  My finishing time was 1:05:01 so 2 minutes off my prediction but not close or far enough off to win the cheese or sauerkraut.  I placed 2nd for my time overall out of 45 runners.  The winner was 5 minutes ahead of me.  We had sauerkraut dip, sauerkraut chocolate cookies (added a bag of milk chocolate chips), brownies, and cinnamon rolls to eat after. Hugh and I brought the sauerkraut cookies.  There were 5 dozen and we only brought home about 4 cookies.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

2011 Thanksgiving Day Pie Run 5K

We arrived about 8 am to pick up our shirt and timing chip. I had ordered a small but they were out so I took the last medium. Hugh ordered a medium and took a large since that was the only size left. We could have gotten on a list for the correct size, but did not. There was not enough time to run the course as a warmup. I used the bathroom and decided to skip the warmup. I had time to run a mile but did not. The 10K started about 5 minutes before the 5K which was good since there was a huge crowd of over 700 runners and walkers. I started off with Katie and had hoped to run around 18:30. The first mile went okay, but a little slower than I had hoped at 6:02. I passed a couple guys and one guy passed me that looked to be in my age group. II was feeling the urge to use the bathroom and I definitely should have done so. I had to slow down for the last 2 miles. The second mile was 6:18. I did pass one guy near the finish and almost caught up to the guy in my age group. Last mile was 6:23 and last 0.1 was 33 seconds. Overall 19:15, 16th place of 397, and 3rd of 33 in the 40 - 49 age group. Not as fast as I had hoped, but not much I could do. I had to run to the bathroom as soon as I finished. I decided not to do a cool down and will go for a longer run tomorrow. I won a Chez Monet Pecan pie in the drawing. I picked the last pecan pie. Hugh was 4th in his age group in the 5K so just missed getting a medal this year.  Results posted here.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

2011 Cranberry Crawl 5K

The Cranberry Crawl is a race that benefits the Food Bank for Central and Northeast Missouri and starts at the Food Bank..   I warmed up with Hugh for about 1.5 miles and then we found the bathroom before the start.  Temperature was 47 F so I wore a long sleeved shirt.  I felt like I had a good race in me so I hoped to go out at a sub-6 minute mile.  Started off with Dan E. and Tony R. was right behind us.  I felt like maybe I was running too hard for the hilly course.  The first mile was 5:47 and I felt better.  There was also a 10K that ran 2 loops and the leaders of the 10K were ahead of us.   We ran just behind the first female runner for about 1.5 miles and then passed her.  Dan would pass me on the uphills and I pass him on the downhills and then we ran side by side. There wasn't much chit chat since we were working hard.  2 mile split was 6:10.  At about 2.3 miles, Tony passes me and I work to keep up with him.  I passed him up the last hill, but he passed me back.  My 3 mile split was 6:06.  I had a kick at the end but couldn't quite catch him.  Overall time was 18:32 and Tony was 18:30.  Dan came in after me.   It felt like an actual race and no doubt we all helped each other to run our best today.

Overall I placed 7th of 92 and 2nd in age group.  Hugh placed 11th overall and 1st in age group.  I ran the course again with Dan for a cool down.  Then we went inside to get some food and get ready for the awards.  For the prizes we were allowed to pick from an assortment on a table.  Hugh and I both picked the Body Glide.  The last time I ran the 5K in this race was in 2008.  Today was a 17 second improvement.

The course is shaped like a turkey.  Here is the map and course elevation profile.

Tony & Andy
Marc, Bill, Andy, Hugh
Back of shirt has course shaped like Turkey - We selected Body Glide for age group placings.

Wednesday, November 09, 2011

New Blog - Primal Nutrition and Fitness

I have started a new blog called Primal Nutrition and Fitness.  I would like to explore this as a long term plan to stay healthy and feel good.  I will likely keep running some endurance races and post those here.  Even though I am not sure all this running is entirely compatible with Primal Fitness, there are some modifications that I can make.  I don't want the running to overtake my life and I think focusing on Primal Nutrition and Fitness will be a healthy balance.  If you are interested or think I am crazy, check out the blog.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

2011 Prevent 10K

Cold but beautiful morning for a race.  It was in the 30s when we woke up but low 40s by the time the race started at 9 am.  I ran the 5K course with Hugh before the race as a warmup.  The extra for the 10K was on the MKT trail.  I was overdressed for the warmup so by the time the race started I was ready to shed some clothes.  I wore my long sleeved Pumpkin Holler shirt, shorts, orange racing flats, and black and orange Sock Guy 3 Days of Syllamo socks. Everyone walked out to the road for the race start.  I heard some guys talking about running 35 min so wasn't sure I was standing in the right place and there were also 5K racers.  Since the race offered money for the top 3 male and female 10K winners, most of the really fast guys/gals were running the 10K.

The course started off pretty flat and after about half mile heads up a pretty good hill (up 100 ft) for a half mile.  The fast 10K runners were in the lead.  Katie was just ahead of me and I knew she would run faster than me so did not try to keep up and kept my goal pace.  Tony was running the 5K and we were running close until he passed me after we got up the hill.  My first mile split was 6:15 which was right where I wanted to be overall but figured the first mile might be slower due to the hill.  The next part of the course is pretty flat for just over a half mile and then goes downhill for about three quarters mile, and then on the flat MKT trail at 2.3 miles. Once on the trail Brad running the 5K caught up to me before the 5K finish.  I passed a guy that seemed like he was tiring out and then next thing I know he is surging ahead and passed me as well as Brad before the end.  The first three 5K runners were fairly close.  I believe the winner was about 19:10 so I wasn't far behind.  My first 3 miles were 18:31.

From this point, the course went out just over 1.5 miles on the trail and back.  Since I no longer had any runners close, I had to push the pace on my own.  I was holding a very steady comfortable pace that seemed closer to a 5K than 10K pace.  Before the turn around I got to see the first 6 runners 4 males and 2 females coming back.  The turn around slowed me down a few seconds.  Then I saw the runners coming out so that helped to see them.  I knew the pace I was running that I was probably going to PR.  My finishing time was 38:31 so an 11 second PR.  My last 10K PR was in 2008 on an entirely flat course.  In spite of the hill and the turnaround I felt like this was a fast course too and could probably go a little faster on it.  I placed 7th overall and 5th male.  There were over 100 runners registered between the 2 races and 39 finishers for the 10K.

After the race there was plenty of good Halloween candy, bananas, bagels, and bars to eat.  Then the awards ceremony at about 11 am.  The first and second overall guys ran 35-something and were in my 40 - 49 age group.  I ended up winning the 1st place males Master's award which included $50 cash which was a nice surprise.  Hugh won first in his age group in the 5K.  There was also a drawing for numerous prizes which we were allowed to pick a prize off the table.  I won a $15 Kostakis Pizza gift certificate and Hugh won a lunch at Honey Baked Ham.

This was the second year for this race.  I was not able to run it last year.  It was extremely well-organized and had a lot of support and sponsors.  This race was to benefit the More Project.  Pictures are on the Prevent FaceBook site. Race results at Columbia Track Club.

M1 - 6:15
M2 - 6:12
M3 - 6:04
M4 - 6:08
M5 - 6:08
M6 - 6:10
M0.28 - 1:36 (5:43 pace)
Andy - 2nd Annual Prevent 5K10K, October 29th, 2011. Jay Dix Station MKT Trail Head. Race Director: Ryan Hauser. Shane Epping, All Rights Reserved, 2011
Andy - 2nd Annual Prevent 5K10K, October 29th, 2011. Jay Dix Station MKT Trail Head. Race Director: Ryan Hauser. Shane Epping, All Rights Reserved, 2011

Hugh -2nd Annual Prevent 5K10K, October 29th, 2011. Jay Dix Station MKT Trail Head. Race Director: Ryan Hauser. Shane Epping, All Rights Reserved, 2011

Sunday, October 23, 2011

2011 Capitol to Courthouse Ultra Marathon (relay)

I wanted to run the Capitol to Courthouse Ultra Marathon but since it was a week after my 100 miler, I did not sign up ahead since it was doubtful that I would be recovered enough to run the 39.3 miles (marathon and a half).  Hugh wanted to run as a relay, but I didn't want to commit until I knew I was okay to run.  My run on Thursday went okay so we planned to run as a team, but did not get signed up before online registration closed.  I hoped Darrin would let us register race morning.  The race started in Jefferson City at the State Capitol building.  We met at the Capitol Plaza Hotel and then walked over to the start shortly before 7 am. There were individuals running the entire distance as well as relay teams that were composed 2 members or more.  The course went from the Capitol to the Katy Trail and then turned onto the MKT trail to Columbia where it finished in front of the Boone County Courthouse Columns.

Melanie sang the national anthem and then the runners were off.  The temperature at the start was probably low 40s so a bit cool, but supposed to warm up to the 60s by the time I would start running.  Hugh planned to run to Easley which was the first 5 legs of the relay 22.5 miles and I would run the last 4 legs 16.8 miles.  We were allowed to split up any way that we desired.  Dan and Jenny were a 2 person team and had a bike and ran every 5 miles while the other biked.  I really didn't have a plan until I met Hugh at Easley so to kill some time I went to Hartsburg where one of the aid stations was set up at 13.6 miles.  I watched some relay teams come through and waited for Hugh.  I rode my bike out a bit about when I thought he would arrive.  He tried to talk me into taking over for awhile at Hartsburg, but I told him he only had 9 miles to go and to slow down if he couldn't keep up his pace.

I headed towards Columbia and decided to go to the store to get some Powerade and then headed to Easley to meet Hugh.  I expected he would arrive around 10:21 so got there a few minutes early and he was there at 10:22 so took him 3 hrs 22 min 16 seconds (9:00 pace) for his 22.5 mile portion.  I took off and planned to just see what kind of pace I could hold.  I had not run a fast pace in awhile and coming off the 100 miler was not sure what I could do.  My first mile was 6:35 pace and I shortly passed Dan and Jenny.  The trail is entirely flat so pretty easy to hold a steady pace, but I wasn't sure how long I would be able to keep up this pace.

I didn't see many people the rest of the way, but did pass a couple girls running the relay and the first place male solo runner.  I skipped the first aid station I passed since wasn't thirsty yet, but by the time I hit the second one I think I was a bit behind on hydration.  I had a gel just before I got there and then a small cup of water to wash down.  The next aid station did not come until Scott Blvd. (11.5 miles for me) and by the time I got there I very thirsty.  I had manged to keep the pace in the 6:30s to 6:40s up to this point.  I drank an entire bottle of water and then felt a little sick and needed to use the restroom.  My next mile was 8:49 with the short break.  I almost got back on pace with the next mile at 6:51, but slowed down after.  Katy cheered me on at Forum Blvd.

I was very much looking forward to being done and glad I was not running the entire distance.  Mile 15 - 7:16, Mile 16 - 7:33, and the last 0.8 - 7:30 pace.  I finished my 16.8 miles in 1:57:45, 7:00 pace.  Our overall time for 39.3 miles was 5:20:01 so our combined pace was 8:09/mi.  We ended up winning the first place Masters relay team since the other teams that beat us all had at least 1 person under age 40.

This was a fun and well organized event and looking forward to being a part of it next year when it will reverse the course and run from Courthouse to Capitol.  The results are posted here.

Hugh coming into Hartsburg

After finish picture in front of Boone County Courthouse
First place Masters Team finishing award with spike and tie from the railroad.  Our course was run on an old railroad that has been converted to trail.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

2011 Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd

After microdiscectomy surgery in February I said I would not run a 100 miler this year and give myself plenty of time to recover and then maybe run one next year if I made a full recovery.  My plan this year was to run an easy 50 miler or 100K this fall so I began searching for a race within driving distance.  I discovered the inaugural Pumpkin Holler 100K in Tahlequah, Oklahoma (less than 6 hours away) on an online race calendars.  The web site promoted a relatively flat course on a gravel road and had pretty pictures of the course. There was also a 50K and a 100 mile race.  The pumpkin medal they planned to award for the 100K was appealing since I am a Halloween baby and liked the pumpkin-theme of this race.  I have often received pumpkin-themed birthday cards.  They would award a pumpkin buckle for the 100 miler so that was kind of tempting, but I wasn't sure if I could be ready to run it and I was going to stick to my plan to wait until next year.  Also, I couldn't seem to get motivated to get my mileage out of the 40-something mile per week until after I ran the Psycho Wyco 50K in July.  I decided to motivate myself to increase my mileage by running every day for 30 days.  I made it 31 days and was feeling pretty good so started to have thoughts of running the 100 miler.  I waited until after the Heart of America Marathon to make a final decision and then signed up for the 100 miler.

I ran the Ozark Trail 100 mile last year in November and never completed a 50 miler before the race which I think made it a tough race for me.  For my first 100 miler (Kettle Morraine) in June 2010, I had completed a 100K six weeks before and my first 100 miler turned out very well for me and I felt good the entire race.  I couldn't find any 50 milers that I wanted to do before the Pumpkin so ran a 50 mile training run 4 weeks before the race on the MKT/Katy trail and then the 50K at Rock Bridge Revenge 2 weeks before.  About a week before the Pumpkin, I received a pre-race e-mail informing me the course was not flat and there were indeed hills.  I had trained on some hills but had not done hill repeats as I have done in the past to prepare for a hilly course.  I was hoping for a sub-20 hour race since I thought it might be an easier course than Kettle Moraine where I ran 21:21.  I still went into the race with the sub-20 hour plan and would make any adjustments on the day of the race as needed if it turned out to be a crazy idea.

I left Columbia on Friday morning and met Michael E. in Lebanon and we drove the rest of the way together.  He planned to run the 100K.  We camped at the Eagle Bluff Campground which was a beautiful setting along the Illinois River.  The race start and finish were just a few steps from our campsite so very convenient so we could sleep their after our races.  There was delicious a prerace pasta dinner catered by a local Italian restaurant and a meeting in Tahlequah that we attended as well as picked up our packets.  The race directors humorously answered any questions about the "relatively flat" course.  Some runners had completed a training run on the course and discovered that it was not "relatively flat" so I think that was the reason we were notified that the course was hilly.  We returned to the campground after the meeting, finished preparing our drop bags, and then to bed.  The campground was pretty noisy for awhile, but I managed to get some sleep.

I had set the alarm for 6:30 am but woke up 10 minutes early so got up.  It felt like it had gotten pretty cold overnight.  I had plenty of time to drink a shake, use the restroom several times, set drop bags out, and get dressed before the 8 am start.  It was cold so I kept my pants and jacket on until 5 minutes before the start.  Then Michael and I headed over to the start.  I turned on my 310XT GPS which I intended to wear most of the race due to the 19 or so hour battery life.  As soon as I turned it on, it said low battery.  It had failed to charge the last time I put on the charger.  I had my 610 GPS in my start line drop bag so quickly switched them out.  I was hoping I could run the 4 mile out and back, plus one complete loop so I would have the the entire course captured on GPS.  Also, I wanted to have it for the first part so I wouldn't go out too fast.  I must have been a bit nervous since I nearly forgot to pick up my bottle after I switched watches.

The race was chip timed and all distances started together.   We all lined up in the finishing shoot to start.  I stayed pretty far back so I wouldn't get run over by the fast 50K runners.  With over 150 runners, the course was kind of crowded until the hundred milers split off at about 1 mile to do our out and back which went through the center of the main course loop.  I was was pretty far back the hundred miler group.  I counted somewhere between 14 and 16th place and wondered if I was starting too slow or were they all starting too fast?  Anything can happen in a hundred miler so I decided to stick with my own plan and run my own race and did not run with anyone for this section.  During the start of a 100 miler you really can't get competitive or you might ruin your entire race so I remained patient.  My plan was to run about 10:30 pace (which included aid station stops) the first 50K (5 hr 30 min goal). There was a terrible hill in our out and back section which I mostly walked. The hundred milers had to return to the start after our out and back and I had just slightly over 8 miles at this point with a time of 1:22:56 (10:22 pace so close to my goal pace) and in 15th place.  There were 57 starters for the 100 miler.  I grabbed a Succeed packet from my drop bag and refilled my bottle, went to the bathroom and then was off to start my first of 3 loops for the complete 50K circuit.

I managed to maintain my goal pace for my first 50K and it felt easy. The plan later is that I would run each consecutive 50K one half hour slower, and then would have the extra 9.5 miles at the end.  The course would be a little long by my estimation since there was an extra mile in our out and back at the beginning and the loop was 31.5 miles.  No big deal since I don't mind a few bonus miles, but it might make my goal more difficult to obtain.  We were allowed 5 drop bags on the course and aid stations were  about 3 - 5 miles apart and drop bags 3 - 9 miles apart.  The drop bags were almost too frequent so if I had to do it over again, I might would not use all of them.  I did stop at each one to get either a bar, crackers, gel, and a Succeed Ultra powder for my bottle.  Also, I would try to grab something small from each aid station to eat such as peanut butter and jelly or some Pringles.  I took Succeed caps about every hour at least during the day.  The temp was warming up so I changed into my singlet in my drop bag at mile 20.  I planned to change back into the short sleeve on the next loop after it started to cool down for the evening.  At 50K, my GPS had me at 5:30:00 (10:39 overall pace) which was kind of scary since that was exactly where I wanted to be.  The 31 miles happened during a 3 mile section of the course that was paved and actually felt kind of good to run on after running on the gravel for so long.  The gravel was softer, but I had to be more careful where to run.  The paved section had some hills that I walked near the end before turning back to gravel.  At one house along the course a couple girls came out cheering very enthusiastically.  I passed a few people on this loop running other distances as well as some of the 100 milers that had slowed down.  My pace slowed which I expected since I think it is difficult to maintain the same pace in a 100 miler or at least on the little amount that I train.  Also, being out on the course so long you go through periods of feeling better or not so good.  It warmed up to 80F so that slowed me down a bit.

As I was about to make it back to the start/finish of the first loop, I got a low battery warning on the GPS.  It made it through the loop though and I planned to go to my car and retrieve a watch so I would at least know the time for the rest of the race.  My overall time when I arrived back at the start for the 39.6 miles was 7 hrs 5 min and I was now in 7th place. I did not know my placing at the time since I had lost track of the people I passed.   I ran the full 50K loop section (after the first 8 miles) in 5:42:21 (10:52 pace).  Michael was at the start/finish and about ready to start his next loop of the 100K.  I left my singlet in the car and decided to go shirtless until I got back to the shirt I left at mile 51 which would hopefully be early in the evening.  While at the car, I decided to have a Powerade that I had in the cooler.  I gulped down pretty quickly so must have really needed it since I felt like I was getting behind a bit on hydration.  I tend to not spend a lot of time in aid stations if I am feeling okay and I would guess I did not spend more than 2 or 3 minutes at most.  It I stop too long the muscles stiffen.  I like to keep the momentum going.

I started the second loop just after 3 pm.  Since I no longer had a GPS, I made time goals in my head to get to each aid station.  I had a general idea of my pace and kept it easy.  I was beginning to have a difficult time wanting to eat so forced down a few gels and something small plus an extra drink at aid stations.  After the Mad Dog station which was about 5 miles into the loop, a dog follows me for about 2 miles to the Out and Back aid station.  The owner soon came along in his truck and saw me running with his dog.  He asked if I had fed the dog and said if the dog continued to follow me I would have to take it home with me.  At the Out and Back station it stopped following me, but on the way back, I saw it following two other runners to the Out and Back turnaround.  Our complete loop had a short out and back section that went out almost 2 miles and then back where we continued our loop.  We had to cross an mat at the out turnaround which would prove we had been there.  They also checked us in and out of the aid stations just to keep track of all runners.  At 51 miles, I picked up my flash light and put on the shirt I had left there earlier.  It had finally cooled off just enough so worked out perfectly.  I carried the light in my pocket since I didn't need it yet.  I had a headlamp at the next station at 56 miles so the earlier light was just in case I didn't make it there before dark or if the headlamp stopped working for some reason, I would not be left in the dark.  I made it to the headlamp before dark and turned it on around 7:15 pm.  I had bats flying over my head a couple times.  The girls that cheered for me earlier were still outside.  I was sure I would not see them the final loop. Near the end of the loop there were quite a few cars passing me and kicking up dust.  Previously, I had seen very few cars on the course during the day. I couldn't avoid breathing quite a bit of the dust so figured I would have the brown boogers they warned us about at the meeting.

At the end of the second loop, I was told I was in 4th place and the overall time was 13:27:44 so I had just run the second 50K loop in 6:22:28 (12:08 pace), 40 minutes slower than the previous loop.  I was out in 2 minutes and started my 3rd loop.  I was ready to get it over before I changed my mind!  At this point I was unsure if I would run sub-20 hours but if I did, it would be close and I would have to run almost as fast as the  the previous loop so probably not realistic.  I decide that 20:30 would be my B goal and also a PR.  As it got cooler, it was easier to run, but food was still kind of blah for whatever they would offer me at aid stations.  At the Out and Back (~76 miles), I decided to try some broth of the Ramen Noodles.  I picked up my very light jacket since my arms were cold and figured it might help to keep them warm so my blood could work on digesting my food.  One of the hundred milers that was just behind me was coming back from his out and back so estimated he was about 40 min ahead of me.  Also, saw some other runners at the Out and Back that stayed awhile and were about 20 min behind me, but not sure what loop they were on at the time.  I started to feel better so decided on the way back I would have some more Ramen noodles. My headlamp flashed on me so when I got back to the Out and Back, they helped me change the batteries and I had some more noodles.

I took off feeling much better.  I encountered a bit of wildlife on the course.  There were cows along the course all day.  On this loop I there were more bats and felt like maybe one might have touched my arm, but I could have been imagining it.  I heard some rustling in the woods and saw several deer running away.  I heard barking dogs in the woods that kind of freaked me out and started wondering about coyotes since someone had mentioned them earlier.  Then I see a truck and am thinking I am already to the aid station but knew it was too soon.  There were 2 hunters with 2 dogs that I guess were hunting coyotes and just putting the dogs away.  They asked if I was running a race.  I told them 100 miles and they didn't seem too shocked.  Just before the East of Eden aid station at mile 87, I tried picking up the pace a bit and it felt good.  I had been thinking I might be finished in about 20:40 at this point, but maybe if I could keep this up I would be a bit faster.  I had to stop at the aid station to pick up some stuff from the drop bag.  I had some Ramen noodles which were a bit hot so put what I thought was water in them to cool off and it was Gatorade, but I went ahead and drank the Gatorade flavored broth.  I then started off again at what felt like a faster pace.  At 2:20 am I run past a house with people outside and next thing I know a girl (not a runner's build) is running with me and asking if I am running a race.  She admitted she was a little drunk.  She asked what place I am in and why I am running this race.  She picks up her pace and tells me to run faster.  Then we get to a hill and she stops to ask me my name, tells me her name is Janice, and I continue on.  The roads were covered with trees, but at one point where it was clear, I tried running without the light for awhile since the moon was pretty bright.  At the last drop bag station Hardup (~91 miles), I fill my pockets with the stuff in my drop bag.  I had been collecting it along the way so we wouldn't have to stay late to get them the next afternoon.  I had some more Ramen noodles which I had been doing every chance that I could get.  They seemed to work for my stomach queasiness.  Shortly after this aid station I am running on the pavement for the 3rd time and this time I notice it is hurting my feet a bit but it is tolerable.  I pass one of the hundred miler runners that is walking so assume at this point I am in 3rd place if I can keep it up and he doesn't start running again.  I was told back at the aid station that first and second place were close together, but about an hour ahead of me so no way I would catch them.  I often place 4th so was very happy to be in 3rd and maybe break the curse.

I was surprised I felt so good this final loop and reminded me of my first 100 at Kettle Morraine when I was feeling so good near the end and wanted to pick up the pace and get it done.  I made it to a point where I knew I only had about 10 minutes to go.  I decided at this point I would not look at my watch since I wanted to be surprised to see my time. As I arrived at the campground, someone blew the bullhorn, and I followed the road to the finish.  Overall time was 20:16:30 (11:52 overall pace) which was faster than I expected so I must have really picked up the pace the last 13 miles.  It was 4:16 am.  I ran that loop in 6:48:47 (12:59 pace) which was 26 minutes slower than the previous loop.  I must have really slowed down for awhile since those last 13 miles sure felt pretty "fast".  At the finish I asked someone what I should do with the chip and he found a lady who asked if I had just finished the 100 mile.  She gave me my buckle and someone suggested I sit down around the fire and I had another cup of Ramen noodles that took about 45 minutes to eat.  I talked to a few people that were either waiting on someone or had finished.  About 5 am, I decide it would be good to get up and take a shower.  It was difficult to walk, but not too painful unlike the almost screaming in after I tried to walk after the OT100.  When I took off my shoes, my feet looked really good and no blisters.

I headed to bed in my tent about 6 am and slept pretty good for about 2 hours and then got up.  I found Michael over by the start.  I had some brownies for breakfast and then we packed up our stuff and headed home.  I dropped Micheal off in Lebanon and decided to have Long John Silvers for lunch and then I headed back home.  I stopped about an hour from home to take a nap before driving the rest of the way since I was having trouble staying awake.

I really enjoyed this hundred miler and TATUR did a great job putting it on. It was definitely a first class event.  The course was a little challenging with the hills and the rocks.  Hopefully they have time to shave down some of the hills before next year so the course will be relatively flat.  I think with more training on hills I could have easily gone under 20 hours.  Also, considering I have done pretty well in 2 of my 3 hundred milers, I have to wonder with better and more focused training on the 100 miler what I might be able to accomplish for this distance.  I stay pretty focused and the entire run is kind of like a good meditation so I don't think about much other than how I am feeling and what I need next.  I was able to walk pretty well on Monday and have slept just fine too.  Overall, post race soreness isn't that much worse than a road marathon and in some ways not as bad.  I ran 7 miles today (Thursday) and ran a sub-8 pace so I am pleased that I am feeling good.  I don't think I would want to run a 100 miler more than 2 times per year right now since I enjoy running shorter distances as well.

Photo of some of us before the start.

I am to the right of the finish arch.

Photo at finish at 4:16 am holding my pumpkin buckle.

Loot plus pumpkin cookies Hugh made when I got back.
Close up of buckle which says "I smashed the pumpkin"
Front of shirt
Back of shirt
Logo on the fleece pullover.
This is the same race number that I had at Kettle Moraine 10in June 2010!
Pictures by Runners World Tulsa

A play by play live Twitter feeds by Endurance Buzz's David Hanenburg 
(I didn't know about this site ahead of time, but I got a mention a few times since I was running so well and some people at home were following his posts.)

EnduranceBuzz Report

Blog Post by Co RD Ken "Trail Zombie" Childress"

You Tube Video by Ron Ruhs

Picture Album by Bryan Moore

Picture Album by Deborah Sexton

Sunday, October 09, 2011

2011 Truman State 5K

We arrived at packet pickup at 7:20 am. Temperature was almost 60 F so the warmest Truman 5K I can remember.  We picked up our packet and received a water bottle instead of a shirt.  We had planned to run a couple miles to warm up rather than run the entire course this year since we didn't have time to do the whole course.  We thought we knew a short cut back to the start so turned down a road to take it, but ended up being 3 miles so we had about a minute to rest before the start. I had hoped to get a drink but didn't have time.  Also, didn't have time to take my shirt to the car so left in the ditch by the stop sign at the start.

I lined up in front but as usual about 20+ people spring ahead of me going out so fast like they are running the mile.  I was trying to keep below a 6 minute pace for the first mile.  I ended up passing over 10 people that were breathing way too hard for the first mile.  My first mile split was 5:57.  I passed a few more people at the start of the second mile.  This is a hilly course and the worst hills are in the second mile so I slowed down up the hills a bit.

Ran the second mile in 6:08 which was decent considering the hills.  By mile 2.5, I was feeling those hills I had just ran.  There were some guys now close behind me which keeps me pushing myself.  I kept pushing until the next to last turn and then these guys start to sprint so I kick up the pace even more, but they still pass me just before the end.  Finished 3rd mile in 6:05.  Last 0.1 was 5:20 pace. I beat my best time on this course by only1 second! 

Overall placed 6th of 76  and 2nd of 11 in my age group of 35 - 44.  There were 3 of us very close at the end.  A guy that was 18:39, 18:40, and I was 18:41 and the 18:40 guy was in my age group.  Hugh placed 25th and second in his age group 45 - 54. I was very happy with my time since I have not been training much for speed lately but seem to be running near my fastest time for shorter races.  Also, had not raced a 5K since June where I was 4 seconds slower on a flat course.  I talked to the guy that beat me for awhile at the end and then Hugh and I went out and ran some more.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

2011 Rock Bridge Revenge

This year was one of the coolest Rock Bridge Revenge runs I can remember.  The temperature at the start was about 40F and it was supposed to warm up to 70 F by the time I would finish.  I went into the race feeling good having run pretty easy during the week..  I ran the 7 mile section of the course with Hugh yesterday and didn't feel any effects from that run.  It was also nice to run this race without any sciatic nerve pain like I had the previous 2 years and be able to easily duck under trees..  The 7 milers started shortly at 8 am and the 25K & 50K at 8:15.  The race was chip timed again this year and Jeff gave the 25K and 50K instructions before we started.  This year we ran a little further down the road to spread out and then came back and into the woods.

The same as last year I found myself running with Tony T., but should know better by now since he is too fast for me..  He always starts out at a slower pace and then speeds up and has a negative split.  The first few miles he was running pretty easy.   There were quite a few people directly behind us that were pretty quiet other than their footfalls while we were talking.  Eventually, one of the 25K runners passed us but the rest stayed behind..  I stopped at the aid station in the parking lot just after 6 miles to refill.  After that I didn't see Tony again and I kept the pace slower.  Also, was running on the Gans side which is more difficult so pace is slower. 

I ran the Gans loop alone, but Shawn was not far behind me and came up behind me at the unmanned aid station just as I was leaving.  I ran alone until I got back to the parking lot and then Shawn was with me for awhile.  I came in at 15.5 miles at 2:28, spent a few seconds restocking my running vest and then was off.  Nutrition plan for today was 4 gels, 3 bars, and supposed to be 4 Succeeds.  Also took 3 electrolyte capsules.

The second loop was a bit frustrating when I got to 20 miles.  There were 2 trails and one went left and one went right.  We had just run this earlier and went right, but the flag was now on the left.  I am wondering if I am going crazy, but decide to follow the flag and quickly realize that isn't right and am mad at myself for doing it since I know this course without any markers..  When I turned around I tripped over a root or rock and fell, but was fine.  No blood or dirt.  When I got back to the intersection, I noticed a couple flags had been thrown into the woods.  Some dumb ass had pulled down the flags and moved one to a different tree or I think maybe had tied several around it since it was a larger tree.  Earlier there were several flags on the right. Another runner came up behind me just as I was getting back on course and asked if I was sure I was going the right way.  I told him I was pretty sure someone had moved the flag and torn down the others so I saved him from going the wrong way.  I yelled back to him soon that I had seen another pink flag so we were definitely on the right track.  It is not smart to mess with a trail runner's mind since we are not always thinking clearly and rely on those flags.

At this point realizing what had happened I was mad.  It is probably good that I didn't see the person moving the flags or I am sure I would have gotten a little violent with them.  I did speed up so that was good.  Then I misjudged a tree that was leaning over in the trail that we needed to duck and I didn't quite duck enough and hit the top of my head.  It sounded much worse than my head felt since it felt fine and no blood.  I found out later that several other runners had gone the wrong way and turned around when they saw the water tower along the trail since that was obviously the wrong way.  Probably didn't cost anyone more than 3 or 4 minutes but still frustrating that someone would do something so malicious. 

I filled up my bottle at parking lot aid station and mentioned to Lisa what had happened.  Also realized that I did not have my Succeed packet.  I had ended up leaving it on the table when I restocked my supplies.  I was okay since I had an extra gel and would just get Gatorade at the next station.  About 2 miles into Gans a runner is coming towards me and says he is running the 25K and is sure he went the wrong way since he should have finished hours ago.  I told him to keep going the way he was going since that would take him back.  He was about 3 miles from the finish.  He did eventually make it back okay. I saw James running with a guy and he did part of the loop with him since the guy not being familiar with trail running was afraid he was going to make a wrong turn on his second loop. He was doing it as a fundraiser for a friend and James made sure he stayed on track and he did finish.

I filled up with Gatorade at the unmanned station.  Not much happened the rest of the loop.  I walked a few more hills than the first loop.  I saw a cat in the woods about a mile from the finish.  I figured I could finish in about 5:10 or 5:15 since I had slowed down the second loop.  Once I got to the hill going up to the finish I had to walk a few times.  I was okay running on the flat but hills were getting my heart rate up too high. 

I made it to the finish in 5 hr 11 min and placed 3rd overall.  I had run the last part about 12 min slower.  The course came out to 30.7 with my slight 0.2 - 0.3 mi detour.  Pace still was slower than last year even though a cooler day, I finished feeling really good (no blisters, no blood, and had an appetite at the end) so maybe I didn't leave everything on the course today.  Usually, I can't eat for awhile after I finish.  The 2 guys ahead of me finished in under 5 hours.  Tony passed the guy in 1st place and I think finished in 4:39. 

The course was in really good shape this year and the trail was beautiful as usual.  It is a fun and well organized race and will plan to run it again next year.  I wore the Mizuno Cabraken shoes and didn't have any problems with them rubbing my toe like last year, but my right ankle felt pretty unstable and was twisting around a lot the first loop.  The second loop seemed fine.  I think I am going wear my Mizuno Ascend shoes with the least amount of miles for my 100 miler since those shoes never let me down.

Stainless steel water bottle & socks for the 50K.  Won a glass in the drawing , $20 for 3rd place overall, and brick for finishing the 50K.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Capital Pursuit 10 Mile

This was a very flat and fast course.  The 5K and the 10 miler started at the same time.  I lined up very close to the  front since it was not chip timed.  I was a little worried I was going to get run over by the 5K people, but wasn't too bad.  First mile was 6:33.  My goal was 6:30 pace.  I was passing people the entire race.  One woman passed me later even though I was picking up pace.  If I would have known the course was this easy, I could have gotten a PR with a better strategy since I was only 16 seconds short and this was a certified course.  The pace seemed too easy and every time I would notice the pace picking up I would slow down until the last 2 miles I just let myself go.  I had way too much left at the end.  I thought I might have a chance to place in my age group since last year the first place was 1:06.  I placed 25th of 517 overall and 7th of 48th  in my age group since all the fast 40 - 44 year old men must have showed up this year.  Since I wasn't winning an award, I decided to leave and go run some more on the trails.


Overall time:  1:04:06

M1 - 6:34
M2 - 6:30
M3 - 6:29
M4 - 6:17
M5 - 6:28
M6 - 6:22
M7 - 6:20
M8 - 6:16
M9 - 6:08
M10 - 6:09
M10.11 - 5:17

Monday, September 12, 2011

2011 Roots n Blues n BBQ Half Marathon

This year I decided to run the Roots n Blues half marathon since it was under new organization and also the price had decreased to more reasonable fee.  After the issues I had with it in 2009, I said I would never run it again.  The only challenge is this year it fell 5 days after Heart of America marathon on Monday.  There was also a 10K, but I really didn't think I would feel like trying to run a faster than a half pace.  The 10K did award prize money which attracts some really fast runners to the 10K.  My legs felt pretty good by Friday.  For some reason, I slept pretty poorly Friday night.  I wasn't nearly as nervous about the HOA marathon on Monday.  I felt kind of stressed wondering if I could keep a half pace.  I kept having dreams I woke up late and had only 10 minutes to get to the start line.  Instead, I actually work up a bit early.  Also, the right side of my neck and right shoulder had been stiff and sore on Friday.  I took a shower when I got up and helped to loosen up a bit.  Temperature was in the upper 60s, but humid and overcast.  I decided to wear a shirt since it felt a little chilly. 

I didn't have time to warm up before but instead used the bathroom one last time and watched the 10K started at 7:30.  The starting corral was quite crowded, but race is chip-timed so not a problem.  There were 643 runners in the half and 618 in the 10K so the half was just as crowded.  It didn't seem like many people wanted to be in the front of the corral so wasn't crowded at all in that area.  I started next to Angie and Sam.  I doubted my sanity for being up in the front just a bit. Angie planned to run a 6:15 pace, but said she might start at a 6:30 which was my planned pace.  There was a course change at the beginning due to some stages being in the middle of the street the course was supposed to use.  We had a bike to lead the way so no problem figuring out where to go.

I was worried, I was starting a little fast, but hit first mile at 6:29 and could see Angie pulling away (no surprise there!).  There were 2 other runners that had pulled ahead trying to stay with her.  I took water at the first water stop close to mile 3 on the Grindstone Trail which is a nice flat section of the course.  Talked to the same guy I ran up the hill with at HOA for a few minutes until I went ahead.  I was starting to warm up so decided I would need to ditch the shirt somewhere and pick it up later.  I took a few seconds and left behind the soccer goalie near some soccer fields about mile 4.   I was maintaining my pace at 6:25 - 6:35 until mile 5 with the big hill up to the Stoney Creek Inn which slowed my pace.

I tried to keep an even effort up the hill and a couple guys passed me.  I had a 7:00 mile for that hill so thought that was reasonable since it is a tough hill.  I passed 1 of them back after I got to the top of the hill.  The course for the next 2.5 miles was either pretty flat or downhill.  There is a nice downhill on Forum which I did not fly down like I normally do at the end of training runs down to the trail.  I kept the pace under control to allow my heart to recover for the next uphill which would be coming soon.  Hugh was out running the course during the race and I caught up to him on Forum near the top of the hill.  He said I was in 4th place although shortly after a guy passed me. 

Once we turned onto Stadium we had about a half mile to go downhill to the MKT trail.  There was a water stop here and a sharp turn before going into the tunnel.  This was the last of 3 water stops and I didn't get much in my cup, but since it was a half marathon and not extremely hot I was okay.  As soon as I came out from the tunnel, I was struggling a bit for mile 11 which was on the trail.  I was gaining on a guy ahead of me though that seemed to be slowing down more than I.

Tom M. gave me words of encouragement after I came off the trail with about 2 miles to go.  There was a bit of up hill but not bad.  For the last mile, I was feeling better and picked up the pace and easily passed the guy ahead of me.  Also, had some downhill in the last mile which helped the speed.  Running down the sidewalk on part of it was a challenge though since there was stuff in the way and people.  I finished mile 13 pretty strong at 6:40.  The course was just a bit short since several of us got only 13 miles.  I placed 4th overall of 643 and 1st of 48 in the 40 - 49 age group.  Felt lucky to place first in a 10 year age group, but placing 4th overall definitely helped.  The overall winner was Angie (same age as me, but female) and the 2 runners between us were 25 and 23.

We could have used a few more water stations which the race director said they will have next year.  I think the course could use tweaking as well so that it doesn't interfere with the setup of the festival and we could avoid last minute course changes that likely made the distance a bit short.  It did work well that the 10K runners started early since I passed very few of them walking on the trail.  I know there were some issues at the end of the 10K for the leaders, but that was not my race so I won't comment.  The race was definitely a huge improvement from when I ran it last in 2009.  It was the first year for this race director so I am sure next year will be even better.

Overall a fun race, a few bands along the course, spectators, and an adequately marked course (although some accurate mile markers would have been good).  Due to the last minute change, the mile markers painted on the road were not accurate.

m1 - 6:29
m2 - 6:25
m3 - 6:25
m4 - 6:34
m5 - 6:35
m6 - 7:00
m7 - 6:28
m8 - 6:27
m9 - 6:53
m10 - 6:41
m11 - 7:03
m12 - 7:04
m13 - 6:30

Overall: 1:26:49 - 6:40 pace

Video Clips from the Roots & Blues Half Marathon

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

2011 Heart of America Marathon

If you could care less about this blog and want race results click the link below:
Race Results

Set 1
Set 2

Columbia marathon a small part of runner's fund raising goals
Marathoner keeps climbing hills after diagnosis
Heart of America Marathon director celebrates 41st year in charge of race

Monday was the 52nd annual Heart of America Marathon. My number 8th consecutive HOA and marathon 25 plus18 ultra marathons. This year it was about 11 degrees cooler than last year at 57F (at home, but felt cooler) at the start and 60-something humidity.  There was a pretty good north wind but didn't feel until the last few miles.  A few less people than last year, but still over 200 runners.  Since we live just over 2 miles from the start line, we didn't leave home until about 5:40 am, and were able to park in the Hearnes parking lot next to the start line.  The convenience of this marathon really makes me appreciate it that much more and also great to see lots of familiar faces running or there to watch the start.  I also liked the fact I didn't have to stand around much more than a few minutes and we were off.  I was shivering just a little before the start.

Took off at 6 am and it was difficult to see my pace since it was still dark and I had turned down the light on my GPS so couldn't use it.  I was able to check my pace under street lights and it was reasonable.  However, I didn't feel like the pace was exactly easy.  Normally, I am having to reign myself in for the first few miles but that was not the case.  I had been tired most of the week even though I had cut mileage back quite a bit.  I thought there is no way I am going to keep this pace.  Then I thought this is a bad attitude so soon in the race  and maybe I will just take a few miles to warm up.  It seemed to get light pretty quickly since it was a clear day.  I didn't have anyone around me that I knew for a few miles and passed the people that went out really fast.  About mile 4, I saw Tom M. and looked like Ryan H. running with him.  Eventually, I caught up to them by mile 5 and ran with them for a couple miles which felt good until the long gradual hill where I slowed down a bit, but still the normal pace I like to run this hill.

I had 4 gels and planned to take one about every 5 miles until mile 15 and one at mile 20 if I needed one. Also, used the water stations, but was having a tough time drinking for some reason today so had to stop at a few of them to get the fluid down.   I had to pee about mile 9 and no one was around so managed to get that done without slowing too much.  My pace from miles 9 - 12 was off about 20 - 30 seconds.  I pretty much knew at this point no way I would be going under 3 hours this year so hoped I could keep pace to run 3:10 or less.

I got to Easley hill at mile 13 and figured since I wasn't feeling energetic, it might be a good time to try walking it this year.  I had one guy pass me on the hill and another walked it with me.  I think my half split was about 1:32 or 1:33 so thought maybe 3:10 was possible if I didn't slow down too much.  I ended up running with the guy I met on the hill for about 3 miles and he helped my pace, but eventually he slowed down and said he would see me at the finish.  My pace when I was running with him was only off about 10 seconds so thought maybe things might be improving for me. 

But that was not to be the case.  I slowed down 30 - 50 seconds for the next 3 miles and he still didn't catch up to me.  I was told before Pierpont, I was in 13th place.  I passed a couple guys after turning at Pierpont, one that said he ran with me at the Sedalia half a couple years ago.  Before, I passed them one of them fell down, but got back up and seemed to be fine.  Even down the hill after I passed them my pace was not that great for going downhill.  A group of several guys passed me before the next uphill including Matt D., but up the hill he ran slower and I was able to stay with him.  I even thought I could go faster up the hill, but decided to conserve energy for the last 6 miles.  We actually held a conversation going up this hill.  Matt commented a girl wearing Vibrams had passed us at some point, but we didn't speed up.  Once we got to Providence (about 6 miles to go) I picked up the pace.

The pace the rest of the way was not a death march but still 7:45 - 8:20.  I felt okay, but just didn't feel like a quicker pace.  Maybe the excessive long runs at slower pace have finally taken their toll on me since I have been focusing more on ultras than running 3 hour marathons. I even had thoughts that I would rather be running an ultra for hours at a relaxed pace than even pushing the slightest during this marathon.

After I realized I wasn't going to reach 3:10, I thought 3:15 would be nice since that is still a BQ for me (although realized later it is 3:20 for 2012 and then 3:15 in 2012 due to the new qualifying times).  This was just a goal to get me to the finish since I really don't plan to run Boston again any time soon.  I get to Broadway and don't think I can get 3:15 so decide not to worry about it and just finish steady.  So finished in 3:15:21, 14th overall of 209, 2nd of 24 in the 40 - 44 age group.  Felt lucky to place in age group with my time this year, but Tom M. aged up so that helped me get 2nd instead of 3rd.

I had planned to go out and run more after the marathon so after about 25 minutes and still not wanting to eat anything, I took off for a slow 4.5 mile run and picked up the car to go back to the start.  The car was actually not more than a mile from the finish, but I took the trail since I wanted a longer run.  I had hope to do a little more but left knee was feeling a little tight.  Hugh had finished in 3:52 while I was gone and was happy with his time.

I wore the Hoka, Mafate Trail shoes for this road marathon, but don't think I wear them for a road marathon again.  My feet were in really good shape when I finished.  There was no rubbing or toe nail problems and feet did not feel sore.  These shoes are quite cushy and I prefer much less of a shoe on the road.  The Hokas are a great shoe for when the legs are already sore.  I do think they are better on flat surfaces so I am going to try for a long flat run next.  They didn't seem to make my calves really sore for the marathon so the calves must have adapted to them.  I do like the fact they seem to work other leg muscles that my Mizunos do not.

My splits from Previous HOAs are here
I like to compare each year, but this year the miles are always off a little on GPS so not exact.
Andy on course (photo by Shane Epping)
Almost to the finish (photo by Oscar Chavez)
Andy at finish (photo by Shane Epping)
Hugh near finish.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Interesting Ultra Stats

Below is a post from Pete White posted to an Ultra Running group that I subscribe.  He compiled a list of ultra running stats from 2010 including 64 races.  While his stats may not be scientific, it does offer an interesting glimpse into the ultra running world. 

According to the Run100s website  in 2011 there are 90 hundred milers in North America so approximately 80 in the US if their list includes everything and is up to date.  

The information below is being shared with his permission.

Hi all,

I recently had a fabulous time completing my first 100 miler
(Philadelphia 100). In writing up my race report
(, I thought it might be nice to include how many
people in the US typically complete a 100 miler in a year. It took a
while to figure this out, and in so doing, I was able to compile some
interesting stats about the 2010 season. So here they are, enjoy!


2010 US 100 mile run statistics*

Number of US races: 64

Most finishers:
Leadville, 362
Western States, 328
Rocky Raccoon, 217
Wasach Front, 182
Burning River, 166

Fewest finishers:
Buffalo Run, 1
White Mountains, 1
Buckeye, 2
Grand Mesa, 5
Laramie, 5

Successful finishes: 3,724

Unique finishers: 2,899

Most frequent male first name:
John, 81

Most frequent female first name:
Jennifer, 14

Most frequent last name:
Smith, 14

Most frequent cities of origin:
Salt Lake City UT, 43
Denver CO, 21
Seattle WA, 21
Leadville CO, 17
Boulder CO, 16
San Francisco, 16

Most frequent states of origin:
California, 388
Colorado, 255
Utah, 156
Ohio, 122
Texas, 121

Most frequent states of origin, per capita:
Utah, 1 in 17,717
Colorado, 1 in 19,722
Wyoming, 1 in 30,023
Montana, 1 in 39,970
Vermont, 1 in 44,696

Least frequent states of origin:
West Virginia, 3
North Dakota, 3
Alaska, 3
Delaware, 2
Rhode Island, 0

Least frequent states of origin, per capita:
Rhode Island, none
Louisiana, 1 in 755,562
Oklahoma, 1 in 625,225
West Virginia, 1 in 617,665
South Carolina, 1 in 578,171

Most frequent non-US countries of origin:
Canada, 50
Mexico, 7
New Zealand, 5
United Kingdom, 5
Japan, 4
Spain, 4

Mean age: 41.5

Mean age, male: 42.5

Mean age, female: 41.8

Most frequent age: 41

Most frequent age, male: 41

Most frequent age, female: 42

Youngest male: 18 (3 finishers)

Youngest female: 21 (2 finishers)

Oldest male: 73 (Karsten Solheim, Pony Express)

Oldest female: 69 (Eldrith Gosney, Headlands)

Youngest mean race (10 or more finishers):
Kettle Moraine, 36.9
Grindstone, 37.6
Ozark, 39.0
Virgil Crest, 39.3
New Jersey, 39.4

Oldest mean race:
Hardrock, 45.8
McNaughton, 45.9
Arkansas, 46.0
Lean Horse, 46.5
Pony Express, 48.3

Male:female ratio: 4.3:1

Highest male:female ratio (10 or more finishers):
Nanny Goat, 14:1
Pony Express, 12:1
Kettle Moraine, 11.5:1
Chimera, 11:1
Wasach Front, 9.7:1

Lowest male:female ratio (10 or more finishers):
Hallucination, 2.7:1
KEYS, 2.4:1
Bartram, 2.4:1
Javalina, 1.9:1
Creemore, 1.4:1

Fastest males:
Zach Gingerich, Umstead, 13:23:02
Serge Arbona, Umstead, 14:09:16
Glen Redpath, Umstead, 14:27:51
Greg Crowther, Rocky Raccoon, 14:58:32
Geoff Roes, Western States, 15:07:04

Fastest females:
Jamie Donaldson, Philadelphia, 14:58:23
Elizabeth Howard, Rocky Raccoon, 15:45:03
Jill Perry, Umstead, 15:58:16
Kami Semick, Vermont, 16:42:32
Annette Bednosky, Burning River, 16:44:21

Races with fastest mean times (>5 finishers only):
Vermont, 24:38:25
Philadelphia, 24:35:08
Hallucination, 24:24:42
Nanny Goat, 24:22:27
Kettle Moraine, 23:43:09
Umstead, 23:21:03
Old Dominion, 23:00:02
Iron Horse, 22:55:13
Viaduct Trail, 22:52:08**
New Jersey, 22:49:30

Faces with slowest mean times (>5 finishers only):
Grindstone, 29:57:44
Virgil Crest, 30:27:20
Wasatch Front, 30:43:26
H.U.R.T, 31:31:43
Swan Crest, 31:08:00
Coyote Two Moon, 32:20:26
Superior, 33:35:06
CAT, 34:07:07**
Susitna, 38:26:53
Hardrock, 39:20:24

* Sources: and individual race websites. Certain races
supplied only subsets of categorical data, which in some cases may have
biased results or caused omissions. Disclaimer: I did my best, but I'm
sure there are some inaccuracies and missing data. Apologies if I missed
anything significant.

**Fewer than 10 finishers

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

2011 Sandbagger 10K

This is a race where you predict your time. You can "win" this race by grossly overestimating how long it will take to run the 10K. Since we stagger the start times from the slowest predicted time to the fastest, usually the person with the largest positive difference between the predicted time and the actual time (lying) wins the race. Theoretically, if everyone told the absolute truth about how fast they planned to run the race, everyone would cross the finish line together, but that never happens.

I ran a few miles with Angie and Phil before we signed up.  I wasn't sure what to put down for my time.  It was hot/humid, I ran a 43 min 10K last week, and I wasn't well rested so figured I would be slower than last year's time of 39:39.  Angie predicted 40:30 and Phil and I decided on 43 minutes.  Hugh predicted 50 minutes.  It was quite humid and temperature was at least 77F by the time the first person took off.  The slowest time predicted was 72 minutes so Phil and I waited 32 minutes to start.  There was no danger winning "The Thing" with the time we predicted although I suspected we would beat our predicted time a little.

There were 36 runners that participated. The course is an out and back and somewhat hilly. There were 3 people that chose a faster time.  Phil and I started at 7:32 am. Tony and Nancy, and Angie started behind us. We started off and it was challenging to pace without the GPS we tend to rely so I sort of used Phil's breathing as a gauge of how hard we were running.  We passed a few people on the way out.  We saw Mary Ellen in the lead so she was in great danger of winning.

On the way back I pulled ahead a little, but Phil was never far behind me.  Angie caught up to me and I stayed with for a little while until she pulled ahead.  I passed quite a few people in the last mile.  As usual the end where we have to run a short loop 2 times was quite congested with people nearing the finish.  My sandbagging placement was 12th out of 36, but overall by time I was 2nd with 41:29 after Angie who ran 38:45.  Phil was only 3 seconds behind me.

Mary Ellen did end up with "The Thing" which she claimed she was not trying to win it.  She ran to the race so figured she would be tired and predicted 68 min and ran in 57 min.  Someone had to haul it home for her.

 Andy and Phil at turnaround point
 Joe (race director) and Mary Ellen (the winner)

Race Results

Sunday, July 31, 2011

2011 Show Me State Games 10K

I ran my long run (22 miles) on Friday and an easy 10 miles on Saturday.  Ran with Lisa, the race director of the SMSG 5K and 10K so got to thinking since I ran my long run on Friday maybe I could run the 10K on Sunday.  I went out to Rock Bridge to run a few miles on the trail at 6 am and if that felt okay, I planned to go run the 10K at 8 am.  I ran 4.5 easy miles on the trail  with Dan S. and Karen which felt okay other than it was getting pretty warm.

There was a line to sign up when I got there but went pretty quickly since they were having us fill out the forms while standing in line.  I ran a mile to warm up but not sure that was too necessary considering it was nearly 80F.   This year the 5 and 10K had different start and finish lines and different courses.  The 10K started about 5 min after the 5K.  There was no getting lost since there was only 1 turn on this out and back course.

I had already run 63 miles for the week at the start line and it was hot.  Legs actually felt okay, but planned to keep the pace easier than usual for a 10K due to the heat.  A few guys started out faster and I passed 3 of them before the first mile and then was in 2nd place.  The guy in 1st had a big lead.  I had a 6:32 split at the first mile and 6:38 in the second mile.  The 3rd mile slowed down a little to 7:02 and was really looking forward to a drink at the turn around.  I stopped to drink my cup of water and then could see a couple guys were pretty close since they were almost at the turnaround.

I headed back and didn't look behind me.  The next mile up a hill was tough and slowed down to 7:29 which included my brief stop at the water.  At one point I thought I heard a guy breathing behind me but no one passed me and then didn't hear anyone.  Once I got over the hill, I picked up the pace a little and ran mile 5 in 7:01.  I resisted the temptation to look behind and attempted to keep my pace.  The last mile went up a bit and I turned the corner at about 5.9 to head to the finish.  I noticed a runner probably within a minute behind but was pretty sure he would not catch me.  Ran the 6th mile in 7:16 and the last 0.2 mile in 7:05.  Finished 43:14 with a 7:00 average.  The 17 year old winner was just under 39 minutes.  I placed second overall and 1st in my age group 40 - 44.

Enjoyed seeing and talking to several runners before and after.  This was a fun race and seemed to go off smoothly with the 2 different distances.  Looked like a good turn out for a hot day too.  It was 87 by the time I left the award ceremony.  I had wiped off with a towel after and then broke out in a sweat all over again standing in the shade.  My shorts were completely soaked today.  The out and back course was the same as the Runner's Choice that I run in January and has always been a tough course for me and the heat added to the challenge.  I have not taken a day off running in 20 days but felt like the heat was more of a factor than any fatigue.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Race for Recovery

This race was to benefit the tornado victims in Joplin and looked like had a great turnout and was one of the best organized local races I have seen. A bit hot to run the usual 10K pace. Ran with or close to Angie Turner most all the way. I was right with her about the first 4 mi. When we got to Forum & Southampton, we totally missed the turn on the right side since we were running on the left. Not sure there was a person there but no doubt there was a sign, but neither of us noticed it. Once we got down to Bethel, I am thinking we should have turned by now. Then we noticed a person coming at us the opposite direction so we ran the last part of the course in reverse. It ended up being 6.87 miles since we ran a section of Southampton Dr twice that we shouldn't have run at all. I slowed quite a bit once I hit 6 mi and Angie ended up finishing a little over a minute ahead. I am not sure what place we were in before we made a wrong turn. Could have been in the lead or maybe someone was just way ahead of us. Told the finish line timer we had run long, but he said that was okay so I guess I wasn't DQ'd. Overall time was 45:27, 6:37 pace.  Not sure how I placed since left and ran with Dan at Rock Bridge.

Update:  Placed 12 out of 130.  Would have placed 4th and 2nd male overall if we had not made a wrong turn.

Monday, July 11, 2011

2011 "Psycho Psummer" Run Toto Run 50K

I was pretty confident I could complete this 50K even though I have only been running around 40 miles per week and 4 days of running.  When I started again in March with a training plan, I hoped to increase my mileage further at this point, but I lost motivation after running one 67 mile week and my plan fell apart.  I decided to refocus on weight lifting to strengthen my upper body and core and go ahead and run this 50K with less mileage and possibly try to increase for my next marathon.

I drove to Kansas City the morning of the race, leaving at 4:45 am and arriving around 7 am.  I picked up my packet which included a shirt, mug, and a Trail Nerds sticker.  I brought a small cooler for my 3 bottles and had filled them with Succeed and ice.  Each was stocked with a sweet and salty bar and a Accel Gel.  The plan was to start with one and then pick up one each loop.  In between, I would refill at aid stations since they were serving Succeed.  Definitely better than that Heed crap.   I have run the February version of this race 3 times, and the summer version is a different course.

The race started at 8 am.  I wasn't sure which direction we were heading, but I was in front.  My plan was to keep the pace under control and not start too fast.  We headed out on the same trail as the February race.  The 20 milers were also running at the same time and the 10 milers would start an hour later.  I started off at a conservative feeling pace.  The temp was already above 70 and quite humid.  Several people passed me and I would pass back.  The first 3 miles had several shoe sucking mud areas that had been trampled by horses.  The course deviated at around 3 miles and then was different than the way we ran in February.  I ate my bar at about 45 minutes.  The trail was very runnable for awhile. I felt like I was holding back and took easy on the hills.  I walked a lot of the hills since they were too steep to run.  Even some of the down hills I took it easy as they were quite rocky and I wasn't feeling too sure of myself.  I stopped only at the aid station at about 5.3 miles to refill with more Succeed.  I had the last bar at about 1 hr 30 min.  The last 2 miles were cruel with hills and more mud, but I finished the first loop (10.4 miles) in 1:44:21.  I did not want to finish it any faster than 1:40 so met my goal.  I was happy to see the loop was longer than the one we ran in February.  I don't know why I was happy about this considering the difficulty, but I guess I like to get my money's worth.

I stopped at my drop bag and drank half of my 32 oz Powerade Zero, and picked up a new bottle.  The ice cubes had stayed frozen, but the temps were rising quickly.  I wasn't dehydrated yet since I actually had to pee at the start of the 2nd loop.  Also, took a Succeed cap about every hour.  As the temps went up, my pace slowed down.  One guy that I passed had his shoe sucked off in one of the muddy sections and had to stop to get it back on.  At about the middle of the loop, I suddenly realize I am flying through the air and not sure what happened.  My left toe kind of hurt so I guess I must have hit it on something.  I fell down and kind of bounced up off my right knee and was back running.  I was a little muddier, but no blood and nothing hurt. I refilled with Succeed again at the aid station (probably about 16 miles) and Sophia talked me into taking a piece of watermelon before taking off.  I think passed three 50K guys the second loop and was passed by 2.  I also passed quite a few 10 milers so was good to see some people.  There was a long section in a grassy field that was flat, but I had to stop and walk part of it since it was hard to breathe in the hot sun and felt like my heart rate was up.  The last mile of the second loop I was beginning to feel the heat starting to get to me even more.  My head was pretty clear for the first 2 loops, but by the end of the 2nd loop, things were starting to get fuzzy and I had to concentrate on moving forward.  I finished the second loop in 2:05:43.  I didn't have a goal this loop other than to keep moving.

Drank the rest of the Powerade and picked up a new bottle.  Took off with another runner beside me for the final loop and someone told us we were 7 and 8th overall.  He was running stronger and ran ahead and said he may see me later.  Next thing I know, the first and second place women are passing me like I am standing still.  I keep moving but it gets harder and harder to run.  Legs actually feel pretty good but motivation to run is not great unless completely flat or down hill.  However, if it was flat too long, I would have to stop and walk since it felt hard to breathe if I ran too long.  I stopped again at my favorite aid station and had watermelon and they refilled my Succeed.  After running through the longer grassy area in the sun and up the hill, I caught up to the guy that started this loop with me and he was walking with about 3 miles to go.  I walked with him briefly and he said he would likely walk to the end.  I told him I thought I could still run a little and wished him well and took off.  My brain felt a bit fuzzy this last loop so don't remember things too clearly.  I do remember thinking there is no way I want to consider doing this again and how could I have ever run any further than a 50K as crappy as I was feeling.  I was really looking forward to getting to the sign with 1.5 miles to go and the final hills in this loop were extremely difficult to climb.  Some guy flew past me in the last half mile, but didn't care since he was obviously having a much better day than me to finish so strong.

I finish the 3rd loop in 2:31:07 and was surprised it wasn't worse.  Overall time is 6:21:11 and placed 13 out of 59 overall. The temp had gotten up to 90 degrees and I must have been more dehydrated than I realized.  I can't push myself when I get dehydrated.  If I had been wearing a HR monitor, I am sure my HR would have been high since it felt high.  I didn't want anything they had at the end to eat or drink other than a cup of water.  I found a faucet to wash off my muddy shoes and legs.  It took me about 5 minutes to untie one of my shoes.  I had no desire to stick around in the heat so got in the car and left.  About 15 minutes down the road, I am getting cooled off and am suddenly very hungry and thirsty.  I stopped at the first place I could find - Wendy's for a burger, fries, and lemonade.  By the time I got home I felt pretty good but took awhile to get to rehydrate. 

Looking back on this 2 days later, I think the main issue for me was heat, not drinking enough, and lack of training.  I drank over 150 ounces of fluid over the 31 miles, but it was not enough for the heat.  After 10 am, I didn't pee again until 6 pm after I got home.  My legs were really not that beat up since the heat slowed me down and I ran about 5 miles on the trail one day after the race.

My Pictures


Course Map & Elevation

Type Distance Time
1 Interval 1 mi 9:49.35
2 Interval 1 mi 9:21
3 Interval 1 mi 9:06
4 Interval 1 mi 9:04
5 Interval 1 mi 9:55.25
6 Interval 1 mi 9:59.25
7 Interval 1 mi 11:00.25
8 Interval 1 mi 10:00
9 Interval 1 mi 10:14
10 Interval 1 mi 11:50
11 Interval 1 mi 11:23
12 Interval 1 mi 11:24
13 Interval 1 mi 11:40
14 Interval 1 mi 10:00
15 Interval 1 mi 11:24
16 Interval 1 mi 11:30
17 Interval 1 mi 12:16
18 Interval 1 mi 12:50
19 Interval 1 mi 12:26
20 Interval 1 mi 12:15
21 Interval 1 mi 15:33
22 Interval 1 mi 14:01
23 Interval 1 mi 13:44
24 Interval 1 mi 14:26
25 Interval 1 mi 13:31
26 Interval 1 mi 14:52
27 Interval 1 mi 15:02
28 Interval 1 mi 15:22
29 Interval 1 mi 13:12
30 Interval 1 mi 14:54
31 Interval 1 mi 15:59
32 Interval 0.25 mi 3:07.68

6:21:11.53 overall 12:12 pace