Submitted by Rush 5/18/2013 1368911358 0 Comments
I've been to the mountain. I'm sore, scratched, cut, bruised, and my IT band and I are going to have a long, serious talk. It took me 15 minutes to rinse the mud out of my shoes and socks. I fell off a log footbridge into a creek and banged the heck out of my left hip. The last 3 miles were tough after than. My calves are twitching, my quads are sore, and I had dirt in places that I haven't had dirt in for years. In short, I loved it!
Rain, lots and lots of rain. Mud, lots and lots of shoe-sucking mud. Mud over the tops of your shoes, over the tops of your ankles, mud up to your shins. Lagoons of water on the trail, some holding deep holes that you would sink in up to your knee. A roaring creek crossing (on the out and and the back), the water almost up to my hips. And right smack in the middle...a mountain. I mean a MOUNTAIN. I knew it was there. I'd studied the course map. I'd looked at the terrain. "It looks like we run up this valley until we hit a wall. Then we climb the wall.", I told a guy before the race. And that was pretty much it.
The course was great. A little bit of asphalt in the begining. Some gravel roads and miles of single track. Lots of foot bridges. Some made out of logs with a handrail; some like boardwalks. Good support with water, Gatorade, GU gels, and fruit. I'd decided to try to just drink to thirst today and push the sugar. I didn't carry my Camelbak,and I ate a gel every 20 minutes. I felt like my energy levels stayed strong. I did have one setback early. At some point, I must have stopped my watch, maybe trying to wipe water off it's face. When I went through the 3 mile marker in 19 minutes, I knew something was wrong and then I realized my watch had stopped. I asked a fellow runner what our elapsed time was. My watch was 9 minutes off. Oh no, now I had to do math.
Mile markers were set every three miles. That was fine until about mile 12 or so, then it became psychologically harder as I knew my watch was wrong and the GPS was wrong too. It would have been easier on me to be able to tick off the miles. The 15 to 18 stretch seemed to take forever, but then my hip was throbbing pretty bad too.
Great free lunch after the race with a free beer. Live bluegrass music under the pavilion. Overall a very well run event that I can't wait to do again.
I finished 26/154 and 6/18 M40-49. If they had done five year age groups, I would have won M45-49. I ran 2:57:29. I started too fast. All week I had told myself to go out conservative until I climbed the mountain at 9 & 10 and then push hard on the back. I just didn't slow down and that, combined with falling off the log, hurt me in the last three miles. I was still "flying" at mile 15.
Submitted by Rush 5/16/2013 1368665346 0 Comments
Once more up this mammoth climb. I'm starting to get some landmarks and time standards on the way up. After 40 minutes of none stop, cal-ripping climbing, the trail levels out some and runs parallel to the ridge line and makes for some spectacular running. The air cools and the flora is different. It's glorious up high.
Digging my new Brooks Pure Grit trail shoes.
Submitted by Rush 4/25/2013 1366915008 0 Comments
This was my second go at this race. My first was back in 2011, which was my first half marathon. I think my longest run ever, up to that point, was 12 miles. I was a distance newb. That day the temps hit around 80 by noon. I had cramps. I ran a 2:11 high.
I came in to this year's race healthy and feeling good. I arrived early enough for a very easy 3 mile jog followed by a good loosening session. There was a brief prayer for the Boston bombing victims and we were off. I wasn't 100% sure what pace I was going to run, but I knew I wanted to push myself. I decided not to carry my Camelbak and to wear my lightweight Brooks Pure Connect. I knew the first 2 miles were mostly downhill but I didn't want to start off absolutely flying (which I did in 'll). I quickly realized my Garmin was going to be off. Running in the boondocks, under a tree canopy, with lots and lots of turns, stressed the wrist gps beyond it's operational parameters (it logged the race at 12.65 miles) After two miles I was feeling really good and decided to just go for it today.
I finished in 1:46:50 for 18th overall and 1st place in my age group (M 45-49). Had I not stopped to pee in mile 9, I might have squeeked a PR (1:46:02). Likewise I did two, 10 step walk breaks, on steep stretches of the back (around mile 11). Overall, I was very satisfied with the run.
Submitted by Rush 4/15/2013 1365984032 0 Comments
Last Sunday, during my long run, I was bitten by a dog, the first time that's ever happened to me in my life.
I think this must be a summer home. I ran by the property all winter and never saw a soul. Today, there was a man on a riding lawn mower and a full grown Weimaraner leased to the side deck. The house sits very close to the road and the dog went nuts as I ran by. I don't think the man on the mower noticed.
My run was a long out and back, so about an hour later, I approached the house from the other direction. The man was working near his front steps. I said hello, he said hi. I took about 3 more steps and the Weimaraner came flying off the deck and bit me on the left thigh. I threw my hands over my head, making myself big as possible and screamed, "NO! NO! NO!". The dog backed off long enough for the owner to run over and grab it.
The owner took me in his home, apologized profusely, gave me Hydrogen Peroxide to soak the scrape, and gave me $20 for my torn shorts. Spoiled what had been a good day.
Submitted by Rush 4/1/2013 1364837995 0 Comments
run the mile you're in