Done and Done...

The jumbled and brief report of yesterdays run...

Nicole ran the 18k which was twice as far as her last run. This involved nearly 2ooo feet of vertical climb. Since our routes started the same direction at the same time I was able to run the first couple of miles with her. During that time I heard at least one other runner asking about her inov8's. Nice! Despite a nagging knee problem that started early on she bested her goal time by over 10 minutes.

It was my first 50k. The route had nearly a mile of vertical climb over the 30 odd miles. I felt strong and it was pretty smooth for the first 3 hours or so, the rest I worked for. There was one particularly long climb about 21 miles in...that was straight up the mountain...on loose dirt. That stretch took extra effort to get up and I was glad once it was behind me. The last few miles of the run were good and fast as it was mostly downhill and flat. Surprisingly, somehow, the hours it took to complete went by fairly quickly (my official time was around 6:38).

I met some cool people along the way, which was how I discovered I was one of 3 rookies running their first ultra. The most popular questions all around were about my Nathan HPL20.

I felt good about my performance and look forward to getting stronger. Did I get smoked by people 10 years even 20 years older than me? You bet. Wow. Even more incredible is the guy from AK who floated to a course record in under 4 1/2 hours. Unreal.

Nicole, her mom, and our dogs all headed to the beach when I finished. I took a quick swim in the chilly Pacific ocean as per tradition.

Today we both feel the soreness in the legs, but not any worse than expected. I'm looking forward to starting up the next round of training this Saturday in the mountains!

I'll probably shoot for at least one more 50k before I think about anything longer since the next logical jump is a 50 miler. I'm not prepared for that leap just yet. I said "yet". Nicole will probably go for another 18k.

No doubt putting more training miles in, as well as the little bit of experience we gained will make for another great time whatever it turns out to be.

We had a great BBQ with friends and family at the house last night. It was sweet being able to sleep in this morning and having the day off work. I think it was the first time I slept past 7 am in months. Ah, lazy sunny day. A special treat this evening was hanging out with a couple of old work friends from DC that were in town.

And now I feel talked out about running...and want to find a new race to train for.

Thanks to all for the support along the way and the kind words.


Ups and Downs...

On the Appalachian Trail (yes another AT story), there is a name for the ups and downs in elevation that don't really seem to get you anywhere. They are known as PUDs - or - pointless ups and downs.

Tomorrow Nicole and I take on what could be referred to several hours of PUDs. Judge for yourself. Below is the elevation profile for the 50k.

Click on the picture if you want to see it closer. It's pretty neat that the run basically starts and ends at sea level.

The weather looks great for Sunday. Same as today. Low 70's and a little bit of cloud coverage. I'll post a run report as I am able. Tomorrow will consist of running, eating, and crashing.

I also plan to keep up with the tradition that Alright and I started in November. A dip in the ocean after the run. The water will no doubt be a bit warmer this time.

Okay, bye.


Unofficial Sponsor...

Thank you Inov8.

If you have been following this blog you may have gotten tired of my praise for the trail running shoe company inov8. Well, here it goes again.

Recently I entered a contest held by the company to submit a photo for a gross feet contest. No, this is not to say that my feet are mangled and disfigured...though I do have some killer heel spurs. I submitted a photo from a couple years back taken after a particularly wet and brutal trail experience. It was ironically just before purchasing my first pair of Roclite 315s. Anywho, the photo earned second place and a shiny new pair of Roclite 315s. These are the shoes I wore for the Appalachian Trail hike and what I will be wearing this Sunday for the 50k.

Okay enough about that. Thank you JC (no not that one).


Trail to 1000...

Okay, so what is the Trail to 1000? It is my goal to run 1000 miles of trail in the year 2009. Pretty straightforward right?

For "real" runners this may not be much of a goal. Keep in mind however I have only been running for about a year. This includes less than a year of trail running. This goal is all about the running TRAILS. No offense to road runners and treadmill junkies, but the rocks, roots, and rattlesnakes are what I like to see on my runs. Any road, track, and treadmill miles will not be counted towards this goal

Logistically it is trickier to get out to mountains to run than it is to walk outside the house and put in some miles. Also, up until the recent daylight savings it was too dark to run during the week before or after work. Due to all of the aforementioned excuses (yes I know they are excuses), I feel the Trail to 1000 is a respectable goal.

So there you have it. I'll need to average 2.74 miles every day for the year. Currently I have run 226.4 miles in 2009, so I am slightly ahead of schedule. I'll keep everyone posted with occasional with updates here. I might fall a little behind pace due to recovery time after this weekends 50k (Nicole will be running the 18k). There are plenty of days and months remaining this year to make up the miles...

Thanks for reading...and pretending to be interested.

That is all.


Lost and Found...

I spent a few hours in the mountains on Saturday with helicopters buzzing overhead.

What's that all about you may ask. Well, I will tell you. Even if you didn't ask. Of course for me to tell you it will require your reading the rest of this blog post. Read on at your own risk.

When I finished my run I walked by a search and rescue team. After a couple of questions I found that three hikers had gone for a out the previous day and not returned. Don't worry. There is a happy ending. When Nicole and I went for our run the next day, a ranger told me that the hikers had been found. I wish there were more interesting details...but that's all I've got. That and the fact that since I started my run before the police tape was up - upon my exit I had to duck under the tape to leave.

Like a good scout, always be prepared, even if you are only out for a day hike.

Only a couple more weeks until the big run for Nicole and I. Ah, that means the training runs are tapering and fewer miles are required until the event. Nice.

In other news, both of our cars need service at the same time. Come on now. I guess I could skateboard everywhere. I don't think a day has gone by since moving to CA that I didn't see at least one skateboarder. Nay, we'll just fix the cars.


The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly...

Thank you JAD for sharing this link. Click see more Celeb Look-A-Likes to browse the hundreds of others. Some very good, some lame...but worth a minute of your time...unless you are driving. Be safe!

flava flav, stripe, gremlins
see more Celeb Look-A-Likes

richard nixon, watergate, the brain, pinky and the brain
see more Celeb Look-A-Likes


Eat Fresh...

Welcome to Subway. Eat Fresh. I hear those words all to often these days. To be more specific, these weekends. It's become a routine to hit Subway on the way home from training runs. As rumor has it, I may have something of an appetite. I admit it, I like food. Come on now, two foot long subs with the fixings for $10. That IS a deal.

Follow that up with a shower and a nap and I'm ready to eat again. It's like the hunger from hiking the AT...but only a couple times a week instead of constantly for months...and you can actually do something about it...and shower, and wear clean clothes, sleep in a bed not made of rocks roots and spiders, ready access to clean water, and the list of "luxuries" goes on and on... I'm getting soft.

According to his blog, Stitch is working on getting up at 6:30 am every day and using a neat tool to assist. I've been on somewhat of a similar "wake up" experiment for nearly 30 days now - at which point it officially becomes a habit.

I am shooting for 7:00 am starts. That gives me enough time to shower, eat breakfast, quick email check, and get out of the house and to work without feeling too rushed. The big deal is the weekends. This was brought about partly because my weekend training runs got to be around 4 hours long...plus stretching, driving to the trail, subway, etc. That's a big time commitment. An early start helps salvage the rest of the day. Yes, I do treat myself to an hour or so nap. I rationalize this with the fact that it actually helps the body with it's recovery process. That and I am tired! The nap also helps me to get up at 7:00 again the next day and run a couple more hours.

The other reason for the consistent rising time is that the body can be more efficient when you establish sleep patterns. I have NEVER ever been a morning person. I don't claim to be one now either, but I do find myself waking up every morning around 6:30, without an alarm and not always due to the dogs. Throw in a couple variables just to keep it interesting...a few weeks ago Nicole and I got a new bed and we are both sleeping deeper and better...and don't forget daylight savings just occurred. I don't think I have ever looked forward to longer evenings the way I did this year.

Okay, that's it. New poll off to the right. What kind of web browser do you typically use? One click. Be a participant.


Grandpa's Stories # ? - A Tale of Two Lunches

some people pop them to scare away hiccups
some people conceal booze in them
some people put groceries in them
some people carry thoughts in them, and when the time is right, BAM right? Just like that.

Once upon a midnight moon there lived a little thing with whiskers I suppose it was a mouse though I never asked it if it was a mouse "are you a mouse?" I could ask, but if it were a mouse it could not really reply with people words, right? I mean get real, people words are for people and trix are for kids. So there is a midnight moon and a maybe mouse and I know this because I am privy to information that most people are not. This is because I work at the phone company and I listen to your calls. And yours. But this mouse, lousy little mouse. It ate my lunch. I decided not to be friends with the mouse after it at my lunch, because I was hungry enough to eat both of my lunches that day. What with the economic crisis and all I can't afford to go to the local chain restaurant for jalapeno poppers and coffee with the rest of my shift, so I brown bag my lunch. Now I know the brown paper bag is on its way out fashionably speaking because you know what with the fancy reusable eco-friendly pretty things in the stores and on the interweb pages. So back to my hunger, it was not only for food, but power as well. I am a social climber. I have high hopes. Big dreams. I am going to own one of those chain restaurants one day and eat all the breakfast burritos and jalapeno poppers I want. All. Night. Long. All night. The waitress, she'll come over and she'll say "what will it be sir?" and I'll reply "the usual". Moments later...a double order of poppers...clutched in my greedy little hands...leaking oil through the bottom of a brown paper bag. I'll even share with the mouse. That mouse was after all my motivation, my fuel, my precious. You thought I was going to hurt the mouse didn't you? Yeah, well it's not that kind of story. Okay, get back to work or you're fired. Yes. You.