Saturday, January 30, 2010

People of Earth

Well maybe that is a little too broad of a title. How about I focus on the 17 people who read this blog! Ok, it has been awhile since my epic failure at Javelina. My lack of posting hasn't been due to anything other than me not knowing what my future in running is and not wanting to jump the gun till I figured that out. Obviously Javelina didn't go too well (DNF at 48 miles). Here is the short version of that race.

I ran what I thought was a very comfortable, sustainable pace for the first 2 loops and mixed in walking as I had planned (approx 1-2 minutes of walking every 20 - 30 minutes). I ran a good bit with Jorge Pacheco and eventual winner David James. David's overall great attitude and excitement about all things running provided a stark contrast to my own sort of blah attitude and in the end I was very happy to see him hold on for a nice win and CR. My left hamstring began hurting right at 3HR which has become customary. Looking back at my last 100 (2007 Heartland) it didn't hurt anymore than that day but I have just become unwilling to put up with it. Also, I was reluctant to take the amounts of Ibuprofen I've had to take in previous long races to keep it under control and just decided I was not having fun and ready for something new.

Now 3 months later, that feeling persists so I can say with confidence that I'm retired from ultraracing, if that is a word. I will still do the LT100 each year till I get my 11 year shiny Bowling jacket, but beyond that it is time to move on. I just signed up for the LT100 Bike ride and will find out in a week if I get in. Being able to "retire" yet still run a few ultras a year illustrates one of the great things about our sport, compared to say Football. I'm very lucky to have picked a sport that I can do forever even if I'm not up front battling it out for the win.

As for this blog, if nothing else I've proven I have no business writing a blog! My postings have become less and less frequent as most of my online energy is directed towards my furniture and coaching websites. So, I will transfer over to the coaching site any info from here that might be considered useful and any new articles I write about running-related topics will be posted there.

Similarly, any furniture-related info (the Wood in this blog's title) will be posted on my furniture site.

Thanks and feel free to friend me on Facebook which is where I try to post photos from our weekly CRUD runs.

See you out on the trails,

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Javelina Prognosis

The Javelina 100 is coming up in less than a week now and I believe I'm ready to go! I wish the race was tomorrow to be honest. But let's wait till Saturday as it looks like the weather is getting cooler towards race weekend. It is snowing here right now, but that is OK as all the training is done.

The race field has improved dramatically over the last few weeks. I'm probably missing a name I should know (I'll leave it to Karl M to go over the odds) but it looks like Jorge Pacheco, David James, and Josh Brimhall will be the main contenders. I believe a 100 miles is too far to get into a racing mindset so will be just worrying about getting myself to the finish line as quick as possible.

As anybody who follows my running knows, I tend to be a low-mileage/quality mileage runner and the build-up for this race has been no different. I've been averaging right around 55 miles a week for the last 6 weeks, except for a bad week while getting over the Giardia I picked up while on the Colorado Trail. What I look for instead of a certain amount of mileage is how I feel at my goal race running pace. In this case, I'd like to be running at 8:00 pace, and with the walking breaks that I'll have to throw in hopefully I can keep the overall average pace around 8:30 - 8:40. I can't believe how good I feel at 8:00 pace right now and my HR is about as low as its ever been at that pace. I think the main reason is I'm finally not anemic which makes a huge difference. Back to the race - I'll shoot to do the first 3 loops around 2:05 - 2:10 each. I've done a few loops there in 1:36 so I'm hoping the 2:10 will feel super easy at least through 50 miles. Then it just becomes a matter of running as hard as you can for the rest of the day. So my time prediction is 14:30. That's the plan anyway!

I also like to be as strong and fit overall as possible. All other things being equal, it is always nice to feel light and strong going into a long race. My weight is about the same as its been for the last 10 years (140) but I'm a bit stronger than I've ever been before a 100 so I'm hoping that is a good sign. I'm bench pressing almost 250 pounds and am doing a ton of pull-ups, ab work, and core stuff. This really does matter when you are carring water bottles for 15 or so hours.

For anyone who wants to keep track of the race, Dave Combs will be providing race updates every 5 minutes on the race website.

Friday, October 9, 2009


We awoke this morning to the beautiful frost shown below on the road to our house. It is hard to imagine I'll be sweating in the desert in 3 weeks:

Tomorrow I'm going to try to get one last run in on my favorite route; the 21 mile Balanced Rock Road - Rampart Range Road - Winding Staircase Road loop. I also got a pair of much needed new shoes so will use them from now through the Javelina 100.

In an interesting confluence of running and furniture news, I just finished the Media Cabinet shown below. It's new home will be overlooking the Western States starting line from a condo in Squaw Valley. The new owner is an accomplished runner who broke 20 hours at this year's race.

For anyone interested who isn't on the CRUD email list, our year end Awards Party will be at the Palmer Lake Picnic shelter on Oct 24, starting at 11:00 AM.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Javelina Coming Up Quickly

After not racing since the Way Too Cool 50K in March, I'm looking forward to suffering in the Desert in another 4 weeks. While my training hasn't been anywhere near ideal, I still feel pretty good about the whole thing and whatever happens my goal is to have fun doing it. I'm completely over the Giardia I got while running and hiking with Fast Eddy. Thanks again for that Scott! And I seem to be able to keep my chronic hamstring issue in check by doing the various leg and back exercises a few times a week.

I think I needed the break this past summer from racing but enjoyed being able to still be a part of the race scene while crewing and pacing Tara at the San Juan 50, running with my Dad at the Leadville Trail marathon, crewing and pacing Tara at the LT100, and finally crewing for Wynn at the AT100 this past weekend. It is nice to know I don't have to "race" every race I want to do, but can always pace or crew somebody instead. Speaking of crewing, I at first thought I'd have to go down there on my own (which made choosing a loop course logical) but with Judy's new work schedule she's going to be able to come down also which will be great.

So onto Javelina. I have done the 50K held on the same course twice so know the course very well. I'm sure it will seem quite a bit different when running the loop in the opposite direction but at least I know I don't have to worry about getting lost which is always my biggest fear at a race I'm unfamiliar with. As for time/place goals, I was very happy to see that Jorge is signed up as that takes a lot of pressure off me. He surely is the favorite but I hope to give him a challenge and who knows? The weather (heat) will probably be the biggest variable that will determine if either of us runs under 15hrs or is happy just to be under 20 hrs. Oh, this race has a halloween theme; I'll be the guy dressed as a CRUD runner.