Saturday, November 26, 2011

October/November running


It's been awhile since I've updated anything here.  October has been a busy month for running.  Heartland 100 was first.  Kansas may seem flat, but in the Flint Hills.. it has some hills.  When you're at 70 or more miles, those hills become big, steep hills.  It was great to be back in Kansas for another 100 miler finish.

The next weekend was Pumpkin Holler Hunnerd in Tahlequah, OK.  It's about an hour drive which made it really nice.  The course again was similar to Heartland, basically all gravel road.  But Tahlequah has much steeper climbs than Heartland.  Finish time was under 25 hours.  But it's great just to have a finish.

A successful back to back 100 mile finish.  Hopefully next year, I'll have back to back to back 100's.

November also brings some good running.  Again this year, I was a 5 hour pacer for the Route 66 marathon.  Included this year was a detour to the center of the universe (added .3 mile to 26.2).  Since it's beginning in 2006, I've ran this marathon every year.  It's great running Route 66 marathon.

Happy running out there!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Hawks 100


Sept. 10th was the inaugural Hawks 100 mile trail race in Lawrence, KS... Clinton Lake north shore to be exact.

This race was not open to anyone.  Qualification was a successful completion of 100 miler in last couple of years.  And to make matters worse, the race was basically unsupported in terms of aid stations...other than what you can stash at 3 spots on the course.  This was "old school" racing.

The course was 4 laps of 23.sumthing miles, and about 8 mile out and back to finish 100 miles.  Time limit was a generous 32 hours, with no cut-offs in between.  Twelve people signed up, and eleven toed the start line at 6am.

My goal was just to finish...even if taking 32 hours.  The first lap was good.  I held back as much as I could.  The trail was not easy...run-able in alot of spots...but only short sections.  There were lots of roots and rocky in lot of areas.

At start line, I had my truck with food and all the goodies.  At about mile 5 and mile 17 (on first lap), I only had gatorade, oranges, Ensure, and some gels, which was not enough to sustain a person for 4 laps of 23+ miles.

My first lap took 5-1/2 hrs complete...which was good... not really pushing it hard.  Before starting my 2nd lap, I ate good and drank alot of ice water.  There was only water available at 3 spots on the course, but no ice.  Afternoon temps started to climb.  At 30 miles, I started to walk more and more..thinking I need to save energy to make it back to my truck (mile 46), since I had minimal supply til then.  I also figured I'll do my running when the sun went down..thinking it would getting cooler.

At mile 40, my stomach was beginning to turn on me.  I was drinking OK... but my energy level was really going down, and I needed some food.  I finally made it back to my truck (mile 46-ish).  My stomach was now totally not happy.  I took my time and ate good.  I even thought about taking a short nap just so that my stomach would feel somewhat better.  I had plenty of time left.  I was at about 12 hrs into the race.  I had 20 hrs left to do 55 miles.

But I got impatient, and got back on the course for my 3rd lap.  It was less than 1/4 mile that everything I ate came back up.  My stomach was completely tore up now.  I was not holding anything down.  Now the decision was...should I go back and just rest an hour and try to eat again?...or continue?  It was now getting dark, and I would have to go 23 miles without eating anything...other than gels.  With the stomach as it is, gels didn't sound good.  I was slowly sipping water...and even that almost came back up as soon as it went down.  I was in sad shape now.  I finally made out to mile 55-ish at water aid station.  My strength was pretty much gone.  The first place runner had now lapped me.  I wished him luck, and I called it "done".  It was tough decision.

Sometimes things don't always go your way.  Time to re-group and go for another 100 next month.

Happy Trails!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Midnight Madness 50 Miler

July 1st, 2011...11:50pm...the Midnight Madness 50 miler gets under way here in Tulsa, OK.  The temperature was going to be a factor this year.  No chance of rain.  Last couple of days leading up to the race has been in the 100s, and nighttime lows of 80s.  It was going to be brutal this time.

The course is pancake flat, with short steep climb at Turkey mtn. from one direction, and long steady uphill from other direction.  Course is 10.3 mile loop, with 1,3,5 going one direction, and 2,4 opposite direction.  This made it really nice.  You were able to see where and how everyone else is doing during the race.  I like this format.

Up to raceday, I've done my heat training.  I was prepared this time.  At start area, I had my pedialyte, salt stick tabs, gatorade, and extra everything to change into.  For Turkey mtn aid station, I had the same stash.  My gameplan was start out slower than last year, and make up time in last two laps.  And since I've been doing my training runs in vibram 5-fingers, I was ready to do 50 miles in the 5-fingers.  But I did one thing that they say you should never do on race day...don't try anything new.  Welll, I did.

During my training runs, I wore injinji socks with 5-fingers...and have had no problems with blisters or anything.  I bought a new pair and didn't receive them until race day.  When I went to try them on, they were quite snug.  So I thought, if I put on my sock it will be very tight, and before I hit 10 miles I may have some serious issues.  So I decided to go without sock and see what happens.

On my first 10 mile, I timed in at 1:35:09.  Of course, being fresh, I was feeling very good.  Vibram 5-fingers felt good... no issues at 10 miles.  But I was going way to fast.  I wanted to be at 1:45 or 1:50.

On my second (reversed) lap, I timed in at 1:35:53 (3:11 total).  Again.. I was still going too fast.  I was suppose to be at 2 hr lap time.  But my legs were feeling good, and 5-fingers were working well... no issues.  Somewhere around mile 19, I drank from water faucet on the trail...and before I knew it... I swallowed hot water from the faucet.  Within minute, my stomach went south.  I was beginning to feel sick.  Soon as I hit the aid station, I took in some electrolytes and ginger..hoping to settle my stomach.

On my third lap, I decided to take it slower and try to get my stomach back on track.  It was not happening.  This really threw me off.  After I left the aid station, I had forget to re-apply some bodyglide to my feet.  At mile 26, my feet were beginning to feel some pain...some hot spots developing on the right foot.  Mile 30, I timed in 2:08:17 (5:19 total) for lap 3.  It seemed alot slower since I was dealing with stomach and foot issue now.  At mile 30, I took off my 5-fingers, re-apply bodyglide, and changed to my racing flats and socks.  I ate some food and back on course for lap 4.
Lap 4, I was still not feeling all that great, but I was moving again.  Maybe not as fast as I would've like...but no matter.  The sun was beginning to rise as I hit mile 45.  Up to this point, the humidity hasn't really bothered me.  I was hydrating well, taking in electrolytes, and eating good.  Actually, it felt cool to me for the nighttime run.  And my stomach was slower getting back to normal.  I'll know better next time.  Lap 4 (mile 40), I timed in at 2:19:40 (7:38 total).  Considering the issues I was dealing with, it wasn't bad time.

Now the final lap to finish.  I was thinking if I just keep a steady pace, I should be under 10 hrs, if not around 9:15 finish.  I was thrilled to start again...the last lap!  But everything went south.  The sun was beginning to heat things up quickly.  I was walking more and more...and less running.  My legs were experiencing some cramping.  The stomach issue came back again, and hit me hard this time.  I was feeling a huge blister on bottom of my right foot now.  At Turkey mtn aid station, I tried to get electrolyte and some food back in me.  I put ice pack around my neck and some in my hat.  I was off for the final 4 miles.  I was beginning to run again for next 2 miles.  But the last 2 miles... I was doing everything I could to get it done.  Everything was zapped out of me.  I finally made it to finish line in 10:21:46 (2:42:59 for last lap).  I was sooo happy to finish.

nice finisher medal

some skin gone wearing vibram 5-fingers

small blister on right foot

50 miler finish...right and left foot!
  Last note to add... this was an awesome race!  Thanks to RD Brian H. for organizing a great event.  And thanks to all volunteers who helped with the race.  Thanks to Oklahoma Trail Runners Association for manning Turkey mtn. aid station.  Congratulations for all finishers...and even to those that toed the line... it was not an easy run for anyone...no matter what distance they covered.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Andy Payne Marathon


This past sunday was the Andy Payne marathon at Lake Hefner, OKC.  For the past year, I've been running in vibram 5-fingers (Bikilas).  And I was looking at this race more of a training run also.

The course was out and back, and repeat another for full marathon around Lake Hefner.  I got up at 3am, and drove to OKC for 6:30am start.  The gun went off exactly on time.  Full and half marathoners were thrown in together.

For the first segment (to the out turn around), I tried to keep slow pace, but at times, I was going way fast..and I was going to pay for it later on.  I was at 56:30 at turnaround.  Coming back was quite abit harder due to strong south winds.  I slowed down quite abit and threw in some walking.  I got back to start area in 2 hrs 3 mins.

On my second out segment, I decided to take much slower and not push it.  With strong south wind (tailwind), my quads are actually taking a beating.  At every aid station, I just stop and drank lots of water.  Temps were on the rise by mid morning.  On this segment, it took me hour and 22 minutes.  I had slowed alot.  My feet felt fine.  The wind was basically taking a toll on me now.

Coming back home on the last segment, I just slowed down and did alot of walking.  This was a good time for walking.  The winds are really fierce now.  At about mile 22, my left quad was acting up.  I walk some and run some.  This worked out pretty good.  I finally rolled into finish line at 4 hrs. 54 min. 46 sec.  I had finished my first marathon with vibram 5 fingers.  And my feet didn't really hurt much.  I'm sure that if the wind was as bad, my time would've been better too.  Everyone's time would've been better.  Nonetheless, it was a great training run.

DG productions did a wonderful job with the race.  Thanks to all volunteers at aid stations,  just been out in these winds had to been hard too... maybe even harder.

I hope to run 50K next weekend.  Happy Trails!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Warrior Princess Trail Run

It's been raining all weekend.  But today, it cleared out early afternoon.  And a special event was held near Lake Keystone.  It was the Warrior Princess Trail Run.. 1.03 mile or 10.3 miles.  Normally I don't run races that short... some may not think it's short.  But anyway...this race was in memory of a little girl that lived only 103 days...thus 1.03 or 10.3 miles.

After doing 21 miles yesterday, I was just taking it easy today.  The first 5.something miles were on trails.  Then the next 5.something miles were on pavement with big time hill finish.  I love hill finishes.  After 10.3 miles (10.38 garmin time), I strolled in around 1 hr. 40 min.

Once again, the event was first class.  Thanks to Runners World/Tulsa, TATURs, and all volunteers for putting this event on.  Ken Childress (aka Trail Zombie) did an awesome job marking the course.

Cool tech shirt and bling

Nice!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Training runs, week of 4/3/11 - 4/9/11

4/3 Sunday -        10.5 miles  1:49:36
4/4 Monday -        0 miles
4/5 Tuesday - am  5.5 miles    0:51:36
4/5 Tuesday - pm  8.16 miles  1:14:25
4/6 Wednesday -  0 miles
4/7 Thursday  -     9.5 miles     1:28:12
4/8 Friday      -     9.0 miles     1:33:28
4/9 Saturday  -     7.5 miles     1:19:36

Total -----------  50.16 miles   8:17:06

After couple of weeks of 20 milers (licking my wounds), it was time to step it up a little.  Weekly mileage is finally up to 50 miles.  I felt good most of the week.  Mileage should be on the build now.