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Showing posts from 2011

2011 Year In Review...

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Wow, what a year!  Honestly it has been one of the best years I've had in a long time and much of that can either directly or indirectly be traced back to my running.  This will likely be a long post (shocking, I know) but I want to do this year the justice it deserves before moving on to 2012 tomorrow.

On Jan 1, 2011 I was in the midst of training for my first marathon ever and that day I ran 14 miles, the longest run I had ever done at that point!  I was shocked at the time by how good it felt, I commented on my Garmin activity that I felt like I could have easily run another 2-3 miles.  That was a great sign of how this year was going to go.  Today on Dec 31, 2011 I ran my final training run for my 3rd full marathon (5th race of at least marathon distance), the Louisiana Marathon, with a 20.67 mile run in 49+ mph wind gusts. I never dreamed I'd be bookending a year with distances like that!!  It wasn't all great, but it was all worth it.  Let's start with some stats…

A Great Long Run & Some 2012 Changes...

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Yesterday my training plan called for an 18 mile run, no worries.  I've been feeling pretty good lately so I was excited and ready for a quality long run.  I wanted to change up my route a little so I plotted out a route that actually was closer to 19 miles.  I started at my mother-in-law Rosie's house, ran down to the Indian Creek Trail, ran down the trail to 119th & Quivira, took that up to 123rd, over to Switzer, up to 143rd, over to Antioch, up to 151st and back to Rosie's off 151st & Ridgeview.  So a little bit of paved trail and a lot of sidewalk.  It was 41* when I started and I felt great.  I felt strong the entire way, the only thing that slowed me down was a headwind for most of the 6+ miles coming down 151st St.  I ended up with 18.95 miles in 3:13:53 for an overall pace of 10:14!  This is the best long run I've had since mid-January!!  My confidence has been fairly high anyway but this really helped!!  I feel strong and I'm still hoping that my …

2012 Goals & Race Plan...

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I know 2011 is not quite over yet, but it's time to set some goals for next year and a tentative race plan.  You can't achieve big things without setting big goals and I plan on 2012 being a great year so I want to start with big goals.  Once 2011 ends I'll review how I did with this year's goals, but right now it's time to plan for next year. Sub-4 hour marathon40 miles at Patriots' Run 9 hour 11 minute raceGet 5 Marathon Maniac stars with 3 Ultras/Marathons in 3 states in 9 daysStart trail running regularlyStength/core/flexibility/balance training all yearMinimum of 1500 miles running totalThese are not going to be easy goals for sure, but I will acheive them.  It's going to take hard work, dedication and mental toughness.  I'm excited about the challenge.

My race plan plays into these goals.  Obviously at this point much of these are tentative, and many of the races in the last half of the year haven't even set their dates yet.  But this is the pla…

The Repare Of A Treadmill & A Crazy Plan...

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Okay, it's been a while since I made any crazy plans.  Well, that seems to have come to an end!!  I've been working on my race schedule for next year and one weekend has had me stumped.  I would like to run the Kansas City Marathon on 10/20.  Simple enough, right?  Well, my friend Carrie from the Good Guys vs Bad Girls Facebook competition had invited me to Mason City, IA to run the On The Road For Education Marathon (going forward I will refer to it as Mason City Marathon, it's too long) on 10/21.  I really would love to get to meet her and her family; she's been so supportive of me!  Also, Iowa would be a state I don't have yet and I have done Missouri (Blue Springs 50k this year).  So what's a guy to do??  I was going back and forth with what to do.  Finally it hit me, why not do both?  I could do the KC Marathon, drive 6 hours up to Mason City and run that one the next day.  Heck, that would even move me from a 1 star Marathon Maniac to 4 stars!!  Great pla…

The Kind Of Week That Makes You Want To Quit...

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...But that's not what I do.  It's been an interesting week.  As far as running goes there were a lot of downs this week and a precious few ups; very rough week.  It's definitely not ideal since all of my 2012 plans hinge on having a good 9 weeks of training leading up to and a good race at the Louisiana Marathon on January 15th and that training seems to have derailed time and time again.  Oh well, I'll get back to this topic later, let's discuss what's gone on this week specifically.
If you've been paying attention (and why wouldn't you?) you already know I've been having some problems with the cold air.  This week has been the worst by far.  Last Sunday (11/27) I met up with my buddy Mark for a nice 14 mile run on the Indian Creek Trail; well that was the plan at least.  It was 35* when we started with a strong wind out of the north and a 25* windchill.  We got started and I was doing good for the first few miles, but then right on queue my lungs …

I Hate Winter...

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This is NOT going to be a happy, positive post as I am not in a good mood right now.  That said, if you don't want to read about what I'm really thinking and feeling right now just go ahead and skip reading this post.  I wouldn't blame you.

I hate winter, I hate cold weather, I hate not being able to breathe.  This afternoon I met up with my buddy and fellow Ultra runner Mark Hilboldt for a 14 mile run.  I met him at Quivira Park at 11:00 and it was 35* with a windchill of 26* and a 15 mph wind.  My lungs were getting tight before we even started.  The plan was to run up the Indian Creek Trail 7 miles to 151st Street then turn around and run back.  As is always the case for me in the cold, breathing very quickly became a problem for me.  Usually Mark & I chat quite a bit while we run but within the first 2 miles I was already struggling for breath as my lungs closed up so I was doing little talking.  Our pace slowed gradually as we went with my lungs getting tighter and…

A New Member of the Family...

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As you know, we recently lost our beloved husky Dakota Joe.  He was a great dog and we've missed him SO much.  We also know; however, that he would want us to be happy and to share our home with another wonderful husky.  He was a rescue and the group he was rescued by was shut down not too long after we got him for keeping dogs outside in cages even during storms. We suddenly understood his fear of lightning and rain.  We brought him to our home and loved him very much and it was always very clear that he was so happy to be part of our family.  I know he'd want us to share that with another dog so they could be as happy as he was.  Well, we found her.  Kristy came upon a breeder that had some husky pups that were born in mid-October (the 12th if I remember right) that would be ready to go to homes in December around the 8th.

Kristy emailed them to see if any were still available and to get more info about them.  They said they had several black & whites (mostly males) and o…

Marathon Maniac #4532...

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That's right, I reached a big goal for the year!!  Last night I officially got registered with the Marathon Maniacs as Maniac #4532.  I still kind of can't believe it.  Last year as I was training for my first marathon (the Napa Valley Marathon 3/6/11) I had never even heard of this group.  I started hearing about them from people in the Good Guys vs Bad Girls Running Competition on Facebook and couldn't believe it.  The MINIMUM requirement to qualify is 3 marathons in 90 days!!  When you are working so hard for 4 months to train for your first marathon running 3 of them in just 3 months sounds impossible!  Even if it is possible, why would anyone want to do that to themselves?!?!  After fighting my way through that first one I knew I wanted to run more of them, but the Maniacs still seemed like an impossibility.  Maybe in a few years I could manage it.

I had made some good friends (Ron & Bobbie Ruhs) through the Facebook competition that are both Maniacs and I was alwa…

Pilgrim Pacer Marathon Race Report...

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Wow, it's been quite a ride the last 62 days.  I set out on a mission to qualify for the Marathon Maniacs by running the Patriots' Run 9/11, the Blue Springs 50k 10/30 and the Pilgrim Pacer Marathon on 11/12.  I struggled through Patriots' heat-fest to get the needed 27 miles, I suffered through over hydration in Blue Springs for my first 50k, so I woke up Saturday morning with just one race to go in my quest.  I'll admit I was very nervous about this one.  Before I started this attempt to qualify for the Maniacs I had only run one marathon, the Napa Valley Marathon 5/6 and I'd had a stress fracture in the spring that kept me from running for almost 8 weeks.  After struggling so bad through these last two Ultras I was wondering if I was going to do the same with the Pilgrim Pacer Marathon.  This was going to be the hilliest race of any distance I'd ever run so that wasn't making me feel any more confident.  After Blue Springs I decided I'd just struggle…

Re-evaluation...

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The things I've accomplished in the last year have amazed me.  On November 21, '10 I ran my first half marathon.  In less than a year since then I've run several more halfs, a full marathon, a 27 mile ultra, a 50k and next weekend will run my second full marathon.  All in less than a year.  Crazy, I never would have dreamed I could do all of that.  It hasn't come easy though, I've pushed myself very hard to do these things.  My 50k last weekend obviously took a lot out of me.  Not so much physically, my body has felt pretty good ever since the race.  Mentally and emotionally it took a toll though.  That, along with the fact that I have a marathon next weekend, has led to my lightest week running in a very long time.  So far this week I've run one time for 5 miles.  I'll run at some point today as well, but I'll probably only do about 6 or 7 miles.  That will make this my lowest mileage week this year out side of the first couple weeks coming back from m…

Happy Runniversary...

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I wasn't planning to write a post about this, but after posting it on Facebook I felt it deserved a more detailed review.  Today (11/1/11) is the 2 year anniversary of the day I dedicated myself to becoming a runner.  I had started the Couch To 5k plan a few times but never got very far into it and never really put my heart into it.  In late October '09 I realized that my weight was getting out of control and my fitness level was just good enough to get me from my couch to the kitchen to get more food.  It was time for a change.  I got a membership to a gym so I could start weight training, I started making healthier food decisions and seeking out information on nutrition, and I restarted the Couch To 5k plan.  This time I wasn't just starting it because people said I should.  This time it was for me, I wanted to be healthier and I wanted to become a runner.  This time it was a complete lifestyle change.

What I know now that I didn't know then is the first time I went …

Blue Springs 50k Race Report...

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Well, I did it!  I finished my first 50k!!  I'll warn you now, this is probably going to be quite long, it was a pretty wild journey so it won't be easy to sum up quickly.

It all starts with Saturday evening.  This race is a VERY low key event, no hoopla, no pasta feed, no expo.  In fact, they didn't even have a permit to use the trail so we had to keep our race bibs tucked in our pockets out of view!!  With no pasta feed we decided to have our own.  There was a pretty decent group of us running in this race so we decided to have it at my mother-in-law Rosie's house.  Kristy and I met Rosie over at her place.  I worked on cooking the penne with vodka sauce, Kristy worked on the salad, and Rosie worked on the bread and getting the table ready.  Jill showed up first, happy and excited as always!  Then Mark showed up (causing Jill to go into a panic and run upstairs), finally Team Ruhs (Ron & Bobbie) and Lindsy pulled up.  Jill freaked out again with the arrival of Lin…