June 22: USATF Half Marathon Championships (Duluth)
July 4: FireKracker 5K
August 18: Heart and Sole Half Marathon
September 22: Boulder Backroads Half Marathon (CO USATF Championship)
October 6: Twin Cities Marathon (USATF Championships)
November 2: Loveland Half Marathon
November 21: Thanksgiving 4-miler
December 14: Christmas Classic 5K
Long-Term Running Goals:
Run until I'm old, and then run some more. Stand tall.
1 wife, 2 kids. Work as a GIS Specialist/Map Geek
Endure and persist; this pain will turn to your good. - Ovid
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. - Romans 5:1-5
PM - ran the landfill loop. My garmin battery ran out, so it just served as a 1 pound wrist ornament. But I'll assume I was running 5-minute pace most of the way. It was quite nice out today, sunny and upper 30s. I think spring is right around the corner.
Striders Half Marathon (13.1 Miles) 01:13:10, Place overall: 2
Marathon Pace Miles
VO2 Max Miles
Today was the Winter Racing Series Half Marathon, better known as the Striders Half Marathon. I was a bit nervous about this race, not necessarily about the actual running, but rather about what to wear. WHAT DO I WEAR?? That's what I was thinking all week, once it become clear that it would be snowy, windy, and about 30 degrees at the start. The thought and indecision was consuming me. Tights? No, too lame. Arm warmers? Maybe, but do they warm the arms enough? Heavy gloves or two pairs of light gloves? Garmin or sports watch? Underwear or no underwear? I DON'T KNOW! It's the little things that matter, and since I don't really train anymore, I try to focus on the trivial.
For the record it was cold, windy, and with flurries of snow at the busing area. Once we bused up to the start line, it was merely cold with no flurries, no wind anymore. I ended up wearing compression socks, racing shorts, underwear, a tech t-shirt with a singlet over it, arm warmers, a full stocking hat, a long-sleeve tech shirt over the singlet, a stylish Nike sports watch, and two pairs of thin gloves. And socks and shoes. It was a lovely array, and if I could do it all over again, I'd do it the same way.
The race started, and I quickly evaluated how I felt: toasty and warm. Yesss...the long-sleeve tech shirt was paying off. At Mile 3, I got too toasty, and shed the long-sleeve shirt, which was the plan from the beginning. Now I was sleeker, better ventilated, and looking like one bad dude with my arm sleeves and compressions socks (a nod to Steve Hooper for accessorizing me so well).
For the next several miles, there was still no wind, and I was very comfortable. Life was good. Then at Mile 6.5 or so, we turn out of the canyon and starting going around the reservoir. We picked up a little cross wind and headwind here, but it was not bad. My temperature was good, and I experienced a healthy mix of sweat and ventilation.
This continued until Mile 10, and it all crashed around me. The best laid plans of mice and men...
We got a nasty headwind, and it made me cold. Cold, I HATE cold. And I was hating running and hating life, mournfully recanting my decision to shed the shirt earlier. Why was this happening to me?? What bad deed did I do to deserve this?
And it only got worse. Soon my hands were numb, making splits from my stylish sports watch nearly impossible to get. I was miserable.
Finally, I got to the last turn, with 0.1 miles to go, and the headwind turned into a tailwind. That was sweet, heck ya. And I finished the race with a time of one-something.
After finishing the race, I grabbed some food, and then Cody, Jon, and I sat in my car with the engine idling and heat full-blast for about 30 minutes (I kid you not). We were all bummed about having to wait around after the race instead of going straight home, but I apparently my time won some sort of door prize or money or something, and I decided it was worth staying for, since I can more running clothes with that money.
After the awards, we helped push some cars out of the mud, and some old rich guy's Jag sprayed mud all over my pants and jacket. That was lame, but then I remembered that I had more clothes at home.
All in all, I would describe this race as "Ploptastic".
Running-related race report:
Alexander Tomas dusted everyone from the start, and he was plain gone. Ran with Steve Ashbaker and James Moore through 2 miles. Separated myself from everyone after that, and ran the rest of the race by my lonesome. At the turn at Mile 6.5, Alexander had 70 seconds on me, and I couldn't feel anyone close behind me. So the rest of the race was just making sure I didn't fall apart, and to secure my 2nd place.
My watch ran out of memory, but off of my own faulty memory, my mile splits were 5:21, 5:20, 5:20, 5:13, 5:20, 5:20, 5:31, 5:40, 5:45, 5:32, 6:00, 6:02, 6:00, 0:37 (0.1). As you can see, losing the downhill put on about 10 seconds/mile, the slight headwind from Miles 7-10 put on an additional 5-10 seconds/mile, and the severe headwind from Miles 10-13 put on about 20 seconds/mile beyond all that.
I was feeling great through Mile 7, and thought I had a really good chance for 1:11 or even a high 1:10. But the headwind quickly revealed my vulnerabilities and brought me to my knees (metaphorically, but almost physically too). I've noticed over the years that adverse conditions, such as hills, heat, or wind, will hurt a less-fit runner more than an extremely fit runner. Today, the wind really whipped me into submission, whereas Alexander broke the course record in spite of wind. I just kept telling myself that the people behind me were slowing down as much as me, and just to hold strong and finish the race.
Fortunately, I have 4 weeks to toughen up and get some good training in before Indianapolis. 5:20 pace felt quite comfortable while the wind was favorable, so I do have hopes for going under 1:10 in better weather, on a flat, sea-level course with good competition.
Today, I was happy with 2nd, as it was quite a bit higher than I thought I would finish. It was a bit humbling to get beat my 4 minutes and to have my own course record broken by 10 seconds, but life is requires constant humbling so I look at it as a blessing.
Sick today with a cold. Probably being around a sick wife and sick baby, plus running a half marathon all-out, plus being on Enbrel was too much. Honestly, I was surprise I made it this long, since Stacy and Seth had been sick since last Tuesday. Meh, my legs need some rest anyway. Time off until I get better.
AM - I woke up feeling pretty good this morning, so I went back at it. Ran the dog around the block, then ran to breakfast and back home. 3.75 miles total. Might go again after work if my energy is still good.
The guy in the Jaguar owes me a new St. George Running Center jacket. The mud he sprayed all over me didn't come out. Did anyone get a license plate number?
Ran the dog around the block. Later in the morning, ran the Landfill Loop at a brisk pace. Had a slight tailwind on the way out, and headwind on the way back, but picked up the effort on the way back as well. Splits were 6:35, 6:17, 6:19, 6:05, 6:04, 5:59, 6:01, 6:00. Average pace for the entire run was 6:10/mile. Nice weather to run in, cool and overcast, but not raining.
Race for Ability "5K" (2.9 Miles) 00:14:59, Place overall: 1, Place in age division: 1
Marathon Pace Miles
VO2 Max Miles
This morning Scott (the Red Rooster) picked me up and we went and ran the Race for Ability 5K. This is a 5K/10K fun run that is a fundraiser for Common Ground Outdoor Adventures, a local non-profit that does outdoor recreation with people with disabilities. I was not really looking for a race today, but I like Common Ground (glad to give them $15), and a 5K time trial sounded like a good workout. Plus I wanted to continue breaking in my Saucony Type A's, as I have hopes to wear them for a half marathon.
The event is up on the USU campus, and consists of a 5K loop. 10K runners would run the loop twice, but 10K's are lame, so I don't think anyone elected to do that. People also had to option to bike, roll (wheelchair), or walk. One of Common Ground's main themes is inclusion, and many of the event participants were people with disabilities (most biked or rolled).
We warmed up by running the course completely wrong. Plus, they had to change the course at the last minute due to campus construction (imagine that...USU under construction), which made our warmup even more wrong. Backwards too. Registration took forever, and the race started half an hour late, but I was too busy chit-chatting to really notice or care. Ah, the local fun run.
Finally they started the race (via PA system powered by a stationary bicycle...no carbon footprint). 5K, 10K, walkers, rollers, and bikers all started at the same time from the same start line. Again, the theme of inclusion. The New York Marathon should take notes. There were probably about 75 people. Myself and a couple other guys sprinted out in front and made it to the first corner, which was only about 50 meters in, due to the course change. We did not want to get cut off by the kids on bikes. There is so much new strategy to this kind of start.
The course left the USU HYPER building and entered the cemetary to the north. It was pretty much madness for the first half mile. The route took several 90-degree corners, and two guys on bikes were right there. This kid behind me was shouting and saying "whoo! whoo!" over and over. Finally he passed me on a straightaway, but then took a big digger on a corner when he took it too hard and bumped into the other bike guy. The other bike guy stayed up, yelled at the kid, and then took off for good. The kid was okay. I thought about stopping, but looked back and he was already getting up. I suppose this is why most serious races don't allow kids on bicycles.
By this point I had separated myself from the next runner by about 10 seconds, and the first bike guy was about 5-10 seconds ahead of me, where he remained the rest of the race. The route finally spat out of the cemetary, and we headed back toward campus. The first mile was 5:04, according to my garmin, but with all the turns I imagine that was a few seconds fast. There were no mile markers, so this was better than nothing though.
After the first mile there were fewer turns and no craziness around me, so I could just focus on running. Mile 2 was 5:01. I felt pretty good, but had no speed, similar to my Top of Utah 5K race last fall. I suppose that comes from doing no speedwork.
I was hoping to run somewhere in the low-16's, and I probably would have, except the finish line arrived before the 5K mark. Or even the 3-mile mark. According to my garmin, I ran 14:59 for 2.95 miles. Scott's garmin read 2.85 miles. So I'll split the difference and call the race 2.9 miles. Probably 60-70 seconds short, so I would have had around a 16:00 to 16:10. I'm happy with that. My last "mile" was 5:06-pace. I'm pretty sure the original course was a real 5K, or at least close, but the last-minute detour definitely fell short. But I would rather run shorter than longer (it's easier).
Chit-chatted a little bit after the race, and then Scott and I took off pretty quick to get the rest of our miles. We ran from campus to the start of the single-track of the River Trail (which is in great shape right now). 8 miles total for the cooldown, at about 7:45/mile pace.
Raining all day today. I put off running until the afternoon, but it didn't get much better. And I was not motivated to do a workout either. Fortunately, I anticipated that Jon would be at the gym this evening and would provide good company and good distraction, and I was right. Ran to the gym, then did 8 miles on the treadmill, with the last 7 miles progressing from 6:15 to 5:45/mile pace. Decent workout, but not too hard. Ran home.
AM - ran the dog for a mile, then ran to first dam and back on the canal trail. It was nice out when I started, then some light sprinkles, then light rain, then steady steady rain the rest of the time. I was soaked. That's what I get for try to run outdoors. 8 miles total, 7:40/mile pace.
PM - ran home from work, then did the Planet Walk. It was snowing, which is better than raining.
Did a 10x2-minute fartlek today, with 1 minute recoveries on the North Logan Loop. I originally intended track intervals, but I just couldn't stand the thought of it when the time actually came. Started the workout after a 3 mile warmup, at the top of the hill by Aggie Village.
Longish run today. I ran from my house to Spring Hollow Campground and back, 16 miles in 1:49:00 (6:49/mile). It was absolutely beautiful out today, which put an extra spring in my step. And the single-track is very much clear of snow, which was good news as well. Also, I topped 70 miles for a week, the first time since September, 2008, and the second time since December, 2007.
AM - ran the dog around the block. Watched the Boston Marathon (until the feed froze), then ran the Logan Loop (8.25 miles). 6:59/mile average pace. It is hot out.
Good running related story for today that I wanted to share. A friend of mine is currently working in Addis Abada, Ethiopia for the World Food Programme. She runs sometimes. Quote from her last email:
saturday morning i
went running a bit later than i usually do, and so the streets were full of
people (i usually go at 6 am and there's no one out). i was taunted by multiple
teenage boys running after me shouting, "haile??? haile????". kids
can be so cruel sometimes.
I think that's awesome. The best taunting we can get over here is "run Forest run".
PM - ran to the dentist. Ran back to work. Then found out I was locked out, and so was my boss (he went cycling, I went running, and the third guy went home...and locked up). So then I ran home. Extra mileage, oh yeah.
Ran the dog around the block. Then did the Millville Hill Loop with an 8-mile tinman tempo. Had a headwind going south (first half of run), and tailwind going north (second half of run). The tailwind, combined with the downhill of the second half, kind of put me to sleep, so I ended up just cruising and daydreaming and not really exerting myself too hard. Oh well, probably a good thing, since I only had one easy day since my last workout, so recovery is good.
7/8 uphill, 1/8 downhill
1/2 uphill, 1/2 flat
1/2 downhill, 1/2 uphill
The Millville Hill (all uphill)
3/4 flat, 1/4 uphill (tailwind)
1/8 uphill, 7/8 downhill
1/3 downhill, 2/3 flat
Got some email info from the Indy Mini today. I'm pretty excited about this race. The min elevation is about 700' and the max elevation is about 730'...so it's close to sea level and pretty much flat. The Course Tool indicates I should run pretty even splits. Here's the prize money breakdown:
Not bad for a half. They also sent a start list of "elites". The only guys I had heard of were myself and Sean Sundwall. Most of the rest are local (Indiana) runners. There are few east-African sounding names too:
But no more than a half-dozen or so. They discontinued the old Elite Program this year, and no longer pay for anyone's travel. But with $3500 for first place, there will still be some pretty smokin' guys...probably just not as many, or maybe fewer 2nd-tier runners. I'm somewhere in the 3rd tier, but would love to steal a 9 or 10 spot. That would be rowdy.
Currently how their program works, is if you are a sub-1:14 half runner, they will comp you, no questions asked (other than documentation of your time). If you are a sub-1:10 runner, they will comp you and give you a free hotel. I think that's a incredibly good deal, less stringent than many other races. I forget women's standards, but they are fair too.
Also, it's a Saturday race. Does this all meet the Blog recommend criteria?
Oh, and there's more:
6:00 a.m.- Pre-race hospitality
building (map attached)
relax and enjoy some refreshments before the race.Your Mini-Marathon bib number serves as your
entry into this room.This exclusive
area will have private restrooms for your use and water.You may also leave your warm-up clothing in
this room so that it can be transported over to the finish line VIP tent for
you to pick up after the race.
Oh...yeah...private restrooms. I know this will get Jon's attention. This is better than St. George already. If the food is good, I may not actually do the race.
Stayed over night at the Touch of Paradise camp for a valley-wide church men's retreat. I got a short 6-mile run in before breakfast. Ran from the camp up into Paradise, and onto the WBR course for a while. After breakfast, I had a little bit more time, so I went the other direction, crossed the Little Bear River, and headed up into the hills. And up and up and up. I had to turn back at 3.5 miles (for 7 miles total), but I have a feeling the route would have taken me to Sardine Canyon or somewhere like that. It was very beautiful too, and less steep than Avon Pass. I'll have to come back sometime and run the whole road when I have more time.
Flew to DC yesterday. Long day, and it was Seth's first cross-country flight, but he did pretty good. After the plane ride we took the metro to downtown, and then walked a few blocks with all of our luggage and a baby to our hotel. Good times.
Got up a little bit early this morning for a run. I looked at a map, and saw that we were staying not far from the Rock Creek trail, which is part of the new Ragnar DC course. Decided it would be a good opportunity to check my mapping. So I did a little 6-mile out and back on the trail. It was nice, because there are no traffic lights, and it's pretty too. It is very hot and muggy here, though, with highs in the upper 80s today and I can't even describe the humidity. It's probably good that I am acclimating a few days before the Indy race though. Will do a tempo tomorrow, and see how sea level suits me.
Another day in Washington DC. Got up before my meeting and did kind of a quasi-workout. Ran out to the Rock Creek Trail, warmed up for 3 miles, and then started a 6-mile tempo. But despite the sea level, I could never quite get going. Then after 2 miles I got on a dirt trail that had a lot more hills, so pace was out the window, but I tried just to get a decent work. Ran a little bit better on the way back, but nothing faster than 5:55/mile. 12.5 miles total.
AM - Still in DC. Ran to Rock Creek, and then along the Potomac River on a paved trail. Not sure if this is the C&O Trail or something else. Eventually, I crossed a bridge and ended up at Arlington Cemetary. Good views of Lincoln and Washington Memorials/Monuments. The heat wave here has ended, and rain as rollled in. It was rather refreshing. I also felt a little perkier during my run today and have some snap back in my legs.
PM - took the metro out to Ben's house in Arlington. Ben and I did a run on the famous W&OD (under my request). More trail goodness. We averaged about 7:00/mile for 6.25 miles.
Back home again in Indiana. We flew from DC to Indy this morning. Later, I ran 6 miles from my sister's house, plus a few strides. Averaged 6:56/mile. The roads here have no sidewalks or shoulders, and it's humid beyond belief. Otherwise, Indianapolis is great.