Sunday, November 12, 2006

2006 Chicago Lakefront Ultra Results

Well, it must happen to the best of us, my first DNF (did not finish) In the grand scheme of things, I probably should not have attempted the run in the first place. Yes, I know excuses are like bowel movements, everyone has them and they all stink, but I will give three valid reasons. Take them or leave them, it is how I am going to get through my dejection.

DNF (well, sortof, see below) Finished second loop (of 3 loops) total of 34.2 miles in 5:09:30

1. My cardiovascular system was severely broken.

On Tuesday of this week I noticed a tickle in my throat. By Wednesday I was coughing up serious lung crap and feeling pretty awful. Thursday and Friday saw me get worse. I was hopped up on Robitussin, Dayquil, Zycam, Vitamin C, and oranges. I had no appetite whatsoever and tried and failed to finish many meals in those last days. On race morning, 3 hours before thr start, I coughed up a piece of phlegm that had the same consistency, but not quite the size of a gummi worm. Yeah, it was pretty gross. I made the attempt anyways, having come this far.

Because I was so sick, my heart rate was higher than it should have been. Early in the week I went for two 6 mile runs with my heart rate monitor. In both cases, I ran about 7:45/mile pace and my heart rate stayed right about 150. During the race, when running a full 1 minute per mile SLOWER, I could not keep my heart rate below 170. My body had shut down. With my heart racing and me trying to keep some semblance of competitive pace, my legs began to show the effects of reduced stamina. My legs are now jello, with it hurting to just move. I tried everything, twice as much sleep as normal, drugs and healthy food trying so hard to recover quickly, and yet I failed.

2. Running the Detroit marathon two weeks beforehand.
2 weeks ago I run 26.2 miles at 7:35/mile pace (and taking my time and feeling great) but in the ultra, I run 34.2 miles at >8:45 pace and feel awful. I was a little injured afterward and it took me a few days to recover. I am not sure that was the best idea. My confidence was certainly way high afterward.

3. I started running again in fall of 2005.
I have only been running for a hair over a year. Only a psycho could believe they could survive a 50 mile race after such a short training time. During the race I cursed myself for failing, having to walk in several spots during the last 8 mile stretch I ran. Here, almost 24 hours afterward as I write this I still feel like a horrible failure. I am not sure how to combat that and get off my self abuse. Nobody else considers me a failure, especially people who know how sick I was.

I am mortal, I guess. Whatever doesn't kill you, makes you stronger.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

2006 Detroit Marathon Results

Underwater mile split 7:02
274/3876 Overall
33/341 Age
MEO Detroit marathon 2006Ok, I know, thats not fast for me (hey, I was still in the top 10%!), but this was my last ‘training run’ before my 50 mile ultra in 13 days. I desperately tried to start out slow, I did I did. It seemed the first 10 miles I was saying to myself ’slow down, slow down’ and I would back down. After 21 miles, I decided to treat this like a training run, so I picked up the pace for the last 5 miles, running them about 7:15 pace. Passing people was kindof fun actually. :) Here, 5 hours after my finish, I feel pretty darn good. One blister on the side of one toe, and a blister over where my ankle brace touches the top of my foot.

My lovely wife and daughter were my ‘crew’ giving me encouragement, hugs and some ‘different’ marathon food. I wanted to test a few ‘new’ things for my ultra. This time I tried potato chips to go along with my peanut butter sandwich and ‘flat’ coke. Yummy yummy. I also took along my cell phone to communicate with Val and SJ, but also to call my parents around mile 10. I tried using my cell phone’s ‘hands-free’ microphone/earplug combo but it didn’t work out so hot, so I had to resort to using it the old fashioned way, holding it up to my ear. That worked OK, since I was still sort of jogging.

The weather was OK, the temp was nice at ~43 for the majority of the race, but the wind was brutal in some spots (gusts over 20 mph) That was probably good practice for Chicago, now that I think about it…
I learned a lot, this last test drive before the chicago ultra, namely:
1. Go out slow, force yourself. Tell yourself ‘If I still feel this great at mile 30, then I can pick it up’. I will have my heart rate monitor with me (I forgot it this time) so that will help.
2. Eat more. After my PB sandwich at mile 13 I didn’t get hungry again, but I should have eaten some more. I had plenty of water and gatorade, drinking some at every other station it seemed.
3. As soon as it feels like a blister, stop and correct it. I pushed on today because I knew I could survive until the finish. If I get another one in mile 20 in Chicago, I WILL stop.
4. Sunglasses! I forgot mine and had to steal my wifes at mile 8.5, the first time I saw her.
Well, now my taper REALLY begins for Chicago. 13 days to go, I will be easy on myself, with gentle runs of 7:45 pace. I can’t don’t anything now that will make me faster, but I can screw up and make me slower. I hope I remember that these last days…

Saturday, August 26, 2006

2006 Somerset Stampede 1/2 Marathon Results

7/103 Overall
2/5 Age
Official Results
MEO Somerset Stampede 2006
I have never run a more hilly course in my entire life. Up, down, up, down, up, down. There were two big ones within the first 5 miles, but I took those with little difficulty, driving my arms and shortening my stride. More and more hills after that made it such that the relatively small hill at mile marker 10.5 kicked my butt. I felt like I was walking.

My first mile was 6:15 pace as was miles 2 and 3. I slowed down to a 6:20 by mile 7 but I felt good. I thought (at the time) I could make it the whole way at that pace. Mile 9 started getting me bad, and I started to slow, which was distressing. I wanted to break 1:25 (failed) but I managed to beat my time from the Martian half marathon I ran back in April. Considering this race was so hilly and the humidity was 90% (and apparently a little ‘long’, we started at the wrong sign I guess) so I will be happy in the result.

There was a local band made up of teenagers that would play parts of motivation songs as runners came across the finish line (we were spaced out quite a bit) Well, they were playing ‘Run like Hell’ by Pink Floyd as I came across  That is significant because my .mp3 player was just finishing the original version of the same song about 100 m before the finish line. Kindof cool, actually.

The new head cross country coach Brian Olsen at JCC started out behind me. He told me he was treating this as a training run for the Detroit marathon. He passed me ~5.5 miles in and ended up beating me by about 1.5 minutes. Now he will brag to the team. Oh well. _I_ have only been running for about a year now. _HE_ has been running for 30 years.

Once again, just like at the Martian half, I ate too much food afterwards and my gut feels crappy. The food was really good, and I was hungry. I just need to remember to slow down. I had my 1 car-boom pack at mile 7.5 and I think it helped. I was stupid to open it just as I came upon a hill, though. My legs feel great and have 2 small blisters on my toes. Everything else feels good. I might even go out and do a run tomorrow.

Saturday, August 5, 2006

2006 Clark Lake 12K Results

18/191 Overall
1/11 Age

A pretty nice day for a run, although the humidity was a little high. My starting pace didn’t seem that fast, but my first two miles were faster than 5:50. My 3 mile split was less than 18 flat which means I would have set a PR for a 5K time if I was running the 5K race. Some races in the Citizen Patriot Run Series draw quite the running crowd and this was no different. It was a crowded field that even had some Kenyans running in it.
My shins were giving me a little grief this week, but good stretching and some aspirin 2 hours before the run helped, I’m sure.

I did sortof taper for this race, chosing to go easy this week, but I also am training for my 1/2 marathon in a few weeks and my full marathon in late October. Within 45 minutes of the end of the race, I was at the Jackson County Relay for Life and ran for another 14 or so miles (a little over 1.5 hours) for the JCC Phi Theta Kappa team. I ended up getting my 20+ mile run for the week, broken up, yes, but I did not have much choice there.

Tuesday, July 4, 2006

2006 Hanover Firecracker 5 mile Results

18/183 Overall
3/12 Age

Not my best effort, for sure. The day was humid as could be, but the temperature was only in the high 60’s. According to everyone I talked to, it was a generally ’slow’ day for a race.

If the mile markers can be trusted, I ran my first in 5:45, and my second in 6:15. I am guessing the mile markers were NOT accurate because my pace did not change THAT much, although I know I slowed down.

I am getting the feeling of being raced-out. There is a 10K road race in 10 days that I was thinking of entering, but I think I have to bail. My 12 day family vacation to Maine sortof threw off my training schedule, and like my other races, I didn’t ‘get up’ for this one. I sortof need to concentrate, either go whole hog as a marathon runner, or spend a little more time focusing on the short distances. I am allready registered for the half marathon in late August, the Detroit marathon in late October, and am planning on Boston 2007. I guess that part of the calculation is allready made for me

Saturday, June 10, 2006

2006 Rose Run 10K Results

11/133 Overall
2/8 Age

Ok, whose stupid idea was it to race a 10K one week after a marathon??? Looking back, that was not the smartest idea. I ran only three times that week, all 40 minute easy easy runs. I felt pretty good day of show and was just hoping to break 40 minutes, which I was happy to do.

The weather was pretty good for a race day, with temperatures in the high 50’s.

I wish I knew how well I would have done had I trained properly for this race. Of course, I have not really trained for any of the ’short’ races this year (5Ks and the like) as I have been focsuing on my big races, the Martian half marathon and the Sunburst marathon. I suppose I could not think about those (or not run them) and actually train for the shorter distances.
Nah…. I enjoy the longer runs.

Saturday, June 3, 2006

2006 Sunburst Marathon Results (Or: How I Qualified for the Boston Marathon With 1 Attempt)

2:59:04 (6:50/mile pace)
15/567 Overall
3/54 Age

Sunburst 2006
Let’s talk about the start. At 5:59, 1 minute before the scheduled start time the PA announcer comes on and says there is a ‘Haz Mat’ emergency somewhere along the route and we can’t start. He says we will get an UPDATE in 15 minutes letting us know if we can run at all. That was rough on my confidence. The good news is that we started 15 minutes late, no harm done.

The weather was perfect. I would not have changed a thing if I could. At the gun it was 54 degrees with no wind. By the end, it was only about 62 degrees. Partly cloudy the whole way.

My first mile was at 6:45, a little faster than I wanted (which was 7 flat) but I was glad I held back as much as I did. There were lots of people in front of me, but I didn’t let it get to me. My second and third miles were the same pace, 6:45. I felt comfortable and managed to hold that pace pretty much for the rest of the race, averaging 6:50 for the whole thing.

The course was kind of silly, with 2/3 of the run being on residential streets. There were two places where I had to turn left into parking lots and do a slow circle then get back on the main road. Annoying.

I had 3 car-boom packs with me, taking them at miles 10, 16 and 21. I think they helped. I made sure to consume them just before a water stop so I could wash them down. There was Gatorade and water at each stop (about every mile) and I drank Gatorade only once, spilling some on me which sucked. I drank a little bit of water at almost every station (two small drinks) and never got an upset stomach.

I carbo-loaded all week, eating lots of pasta. The pasta dinner provided on Friday night wasn’t that great, I had to force myself to get it down. When I woke up race morning (at 3:45) I had a big cup of tea, a snickers marathon energy bar, a oatmeal-to-go bar and even some energy beans (jelly beans meant for ‘energy’, tasty they were) Quite a bit to eat before a race now that I think back on it, but it helped. They were spaced out enough so my stomach was ok.

Once again I got very emotional on Friday night and race day before the start, but it was in spurts. After the pasta dinner, drinking my night tea and getting ready for bed, I was fine. I slept very peacefully, waking up refreshed. Waiting for the start it would come and go, come and go. Once the race started I was fine until after I passed the finish line, then when I realized the magnitude of the day, it hit me again.

In one of my running reads, it talks about having three goals for every race. An easy-to attain one, a realistic ‘good’ time, and the ‘if conditions are perfect’ goal. My easy-to-attain goal was to finish (it was my first marathon, ya know) My ‘good’ goal was to qualify for Boston (3:10) and my ‘perfect conditions’ (which today was, really) goal was 3:00. I achieved all three.

After I finished, I felt fine, and still feel fine, here 6 hours after I finished. One toe has too much blood in it (a common occurance for me on longs runs, I am used to it) and that is it. Muscles feel good, little stiffness. I actually feel better than I did after my half marathon April 1st.

Now I have to figure out what time to shoot for at my next marathon (probably Detroit) but on Monday morning I was start my plans for my trip to Boston April of 2007!

Sunday, May 28, 2006

2006 Mad City 5K (at the marathon) Results

13/449 Overall
1st in age
Mad City 2006I know what you are thinking, how could I run so freaking slow? Well, I was back in my home town, Madison, MI and I have a 12 year old nephew who is becoming a pretty good runner. I decided to enter him into a 5K and run with him (at his pace) for his first competition. He did a darn fine job, placing first in his age group, which was age 1-19! His pace varied a little bit, but he never walked, and this was his very first race at this distance. The age group awards are engraved plaques (which will get mailed later) so that is cool.

This race was slow. Had I run a ‘normal’ 5K pace for me, I would have finished in 4th or 5th place overall, way high for 449 runners. Granted it was a little on the hot side. In fact they shut down the marathon a little early because it go so hot.

There were 4 races going on this day, a marathon (780 finishers) a half marathon (2038 runners) and also a 10K (511) in addition to our 5K. Maybe all the fast people were running the marathon, who knows.

This was great prep for next week, though. My nephew and I were there for the start of the marathon, so I got into the whole feel of the beginning. It was very very emotional. I felt just like I did the 20 minutes before my my half marathon back in April, just very emtional, to the brink of crying. Wierd. Now there is nothing between me and Sunburst. I know I will feel that way again, and I just have to hold on. Once I start and get 800m down the course, I will be just fine. It was good though to feel that again, so I can prepare for it.
Time to focus…

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Family Service & Children’s Aid 5K results

2/50 Overall

A very nice day for a run, a bit on the cool side. I started out the race in the lead for the first half mile. My 1 mile split was 6:01, 2nd mile split 11:59. That's what we call a ‘negative split’ which doesn't happen for me too often.

Again, since marathon day is fast approaching, I couldn't take a day off from training, so this was my tempo run for the week. Unlike my last race, I did my long run (18 miles) for the week on Wednesday so as to have three days rest. I was hoping for a sub-19 time, and got it.
It looks like this might be my final race before the big one. Ugh. Now I really start stressing…

Saturday, April 15, 2006

2006 Orthopediac Rehab 8K Results

15/190 Overall
3/? Age

The day was absolutely perfect for a run. About 50 degrees, no wind, and blue sky. I started out solid (first mile at 5:50) but then slowed down. I could feel the 15 miles I put on two days ago as the race went on.
As my first marathon is mere weeks away, I cannot ‘give up’ any training days for races, so I did my long run of the week on thursday, and the race was my ‘tempo’ run of the week. I will do the same for the next two races for the same reason. Those are both 5Ks.

When I put my time for the race into the cool distance calculator, I still get a sub 3:10 marathon, so I am still on pace. Focus focus focus…

Thursday, April 6, 2006

How Running Has Changed My Life In Short Order

So I started running seriously again last fall and once I realized I was going to stay with it this time for a while, I tried to start improving the rest of my life to help my running. I started to eat a little better, cut back on fatty
foods, party a little less, lose some weight, etc. I was making improvements, but they were small.

Then I decided to start training for a marathon, and actually ran in a half marathon. Last Saturday was a turning point. With great success in that race I realized that I actually have a shot to qualify for Boston, almost every distance runners dream. With that as a legitimate goal, my focus has sharpened even more. My motivation for eating better, having a better lifestyle, being more kind to people (keeps stress low) seems to have increased 3 fold because of that race.

I feel absolutely fantastic, and am getting better everyday. Ahh, life is good.

Remember, there is no finish line.

Saturday, April 1, 2006

2006 Martian Half Marathon Results

28/2012 Overall
7/188 Age
Well, the Martian half marathon was my test to see if I will be able to run a full marathon.
My goal was to do it in less than 1.5 hours, which means I _should_ be able to run a full marathon in less than 3:10 (Boston qualifying time, which is my ultimate goal)
This week I have been trying very hard to stay relaxed, watching closely what I eat, and forcing myself to take my runs easy. Yesterday I played 9 holes of golf which helped as well. All that ‘work’ paid off today.
The marathon and half marathon started at the same time, but I was near the front, crossing the start line about 10 seconds after the gun. My first mile was 6:00 min exactly, which happens to be my 5K race pace. After ~ 5 miles I had a 3 minute ‘lead’ on my 1:30 goal pace and tried very hard to keep that for the remainder of the race, which I did. I kept it so solid, that I could not ‘kick’ at the end, because I had been running so long at one speed. That is a good thing, though.
After the race was done, I felt fantastic. My legs (shins splints, ankles, heel, all of which have been hurting me in the last 3 weeks) feel fine. Small blisters were starting to form on my toes, so next time I need to remember to put some body glide in between my toes. I did eat too much food after the race, so my stomach got upset and I am a little tired, but feel great.
Tips for my next (long) race, which should be the Sunburst Marathon in June:
1. Go to the bathroom early. The line right before the start is going to be VERY long.
2. Hold your pace, no matter what people around you are doing. You are racing against the clock.
3. Body glide on thighs and toes
4. Golf the day before
5. Taper. Really. It was hard to do this week, forcing myself to do short workouts, but it paid off.
6. Don’t drink to much water during the race unless its hot. I was plenty hydrated from my morning tea, but I had a little water at each aid station, and I didn’t need to.
7. I had a carb-boom gel pack at mile 8.5 Not sure if it helped or not, but probably did. I will need those for the marathon for sure.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

2006 Advance Packaging 5000m Results

11/197 Overall
1/9 Age

I didn’t find out I was running this race until Tuesday evening of this week (I was going to be doing something else, but it fell through) so I was not mentally prepared for it. It was sortof by the seat of my pants. It was hard to get ‘up’ for this race because of that, and the fact that it started at 7pm (ugh!)

So I started and ran a great race in the end, even though I felt crappy and thought I wouldn’t break 19. Well, I did and it made me think I should be able to break that elusive 18 sooner rather than later. Woo Hoo!

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Hospice Holiday 2006 5k Results

7/~00 Overall
1/? Age
It felt good. The weather was a little chilly, with a slight wind. A flat out and back that did not have any mile splits, so I did not know how fast I was running until the turn which I hit at 9:10.
My goals for this run were twofold, both of which I achieved. I broke 19:00, and I beat Dane, my running partner by 20 seconds.
Salacia did the kids sprint afterwards, winning her race, albeit short.
Even though my foot hurt most of the week, it gave me no problems during the race.

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

2006 Groundhog Gallop Results

6:24 pace
12/107 Overall
2/5 Age
The weather was horrible. About 30 degrees, 10-15 MPH winds and raining fairly hard. It was just plain awful  For a few days before my body was just dragging. That on top of a 2pm start , I am surprised I did as well as I did. The afternoon start was tough because it was hard getting food into me beforehand. How much toast? What time? That and all morning I was thinking about the race and started psyching myself out. Not my favorite race, for sure.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

2006 Portland Winter Run 5K Results

19:14 (6:14 pace)
25/291 Overall
3/13 Age

The race conditions were awful. The temp was about 15 degrees and there was a 15-20 mph wind. There was was a long ~600m stretch right into the teeth of it at mile 2.5. That sucked in a major way.

Only my third run after my starting running again, and I felt pretty darn good. The race organizers was kind enough to have a few people offer their homes for runners from out of town, so I got to crash at the race directors house. That was pretty cool.

This race had a serious small town feel to it, quite cool. I might go back next year.