Sunday, August 31, 2008

Two weeks out, running update

So it has been two weeks since Leadville. In some ways it seems longer and in other ways not long enough. I have been taking it pretty easy all in all. Today I had my first run with Paul since Leadville. It was nice to run with him and talk about things with the race. I think he feels alot like me with this empty feeling. Like we need to do more because we did not do enough.

I felt pretty good over all on the run. We ran for 1 hour 20 min's at Hyland. It was great to hit the dirt. My right knee was still a bit sore but nothing to bad. Tomorrow I am running down on the Victory memorial drive while Sonya runs the 10k. Should be fun.

Friday, August 29, 2008

State Fair Fun

I took the kids to the state fair today. We as a family tend to like going to the fair each year. Many years we go more than once !! This year was a two timer for me and Evan. We went with Mom once then today took the girls (the baba's as Evan calls them) as well. We had a great day for a 6 hour day at the fair. Not to hot with a light breeze. We ate lot's of food and Evan got to see ton's of animals.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Thanks for the feedback

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for all the feedback from my Leadville 100 post race post. I always find it nice to hear different peoples viewpoints and such.

So for a running update I do not have much to report. I have run a few times and will say my body feels pretty good overall. My right knee has been a bit sore but I think everything will be ok. I have been running every other day for a week now. I have been getting 8-9 miles on each run. I look to step it up this weekend some maybe like 12-15 miles. My goal is to make it up north so I can help pace my buddy Adam Harmer at the SHT 100. It will be his first 100 mile race !! Adam is a great example of what the world of blogging can do. I first met him on this blog then got to know him as a great customer of TC Running Company.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Random pictures from trip

This is a few of my favorite pictures from our trip out to Leadville,CO this year. We went out via Mt. Rushmore, then on to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Leadville 100 2008, What ?

I have been back for 3 days so far and I am still trying to come to grips with my feelings about the race. For one I will say it is truly a classic in the world of ultra running, heck I would even say a classic in all running. When you ask people if they have ever heard of ultra running both Western States and Leadville will be what comes to mind for them. In doing Western States 100 mile trail run back in 2003 I was very focused on knocking Leadville off my list of things to do. Maybe that is what makes it so hard to except how it ended for me. This is my race story.

The day started at 3am. With a 4am start time I did not end up with a ton a sleep. We got to the start with temps in the low 30's and light rain. After we got going in the race for about 2 miles the rain stoped and heck it seemed very nice. It was fun running with my friends Steve and Paul. Paul and I had trained for this race all year together Knocking out many long runs and lot's of hill repeats along the way.

At the begging of the race I was feeling great !! We got to the first aid station and I was super happy to see my wife Sonya and my brothers. I got in and out very quickly and started off to the first big climb up Sugarloaf pass which is just over 11,000 feet.

Going up the mountain we got to run in some mix of rain and light snow. I have never run in snow in mid August. We next got into the aid station Fish Hatchery at mile 23.5 and it was pouring rain once more. Not what I was hoping for but I was dealing with it.

I was still feeling good as we next made our way back up to like 10,500 feet before drooping down to 9,500 at the Twin Lakes aid station, mile 39.5. At that point I was doing great, feeling great and was in 57th place. We got into our cold weather stuff as we were told in would be cold on top of the next mountain, Hope pass which tops out at 12,600 feet !!!

I can not tell you what it feels like to make your way up this beast. To make things worse we got pounded with hail and snow on the way up. At the top you can't believe you eyes. It is so crazy to look around. I tried not to do much looking around as I was very light headed at the time. I believe this had more to do with needing more food in my body. Coming down on the back side is not much easier as you can imagine trying to run down something so steep.

As I got to the 50 mile mark and the turn around point of the race I was happy to see my family, but thinking I might feel like stopping as I was now off my goal time pace. I cam into the Winfield station at 11 hours 33 min's. About 1+ hour slower than I was shooting for. Not to mention I was now 103rd place. I had 46 people pass me on the last 10 miles during that climb. That sucked. But lucky for me Sonya jumped in to help me over the top of the mountain. Thank God !!

The next 10 miles up and back over Hope Pass was not to bad now that I had Sonya with me. I was feeling better and happy to have her with me. Even though I still wanted to stop by the end of this section I was enjoying my time with my wife. Maybe things would turn for me ?

Durning the next 10 miles from Twin Lakes back to Halfmoon things sure did turn. It got dark, cold and started to rain more !! Things went from bad to worse as I could see Sonya was getting very cold. Once we made it to Halfmoon we got Sonya into the medical tent to be treated for hypothermia. While there I saw that Paul had also been in the tent and was done. At this point it became the perfect storm of what to do for me. I could go home with them in the warm car, or go walk/run 30 more miles in the cold rain by myself ? I choose the going home option.

This was not easy but is what I have done. I still am mad at myself for not pushing on but in a way know that I needed to live to fight another day. I could sit around forever thinking of what I could have done differently but that will not change things. The fact is that I was way off what I wanted and know I am able to do. Sometimes life just goes that way. I am glad to not be hurt and am looking forward to the fall. I do not know if I will be back next year at Leadville. But if I was a betting man I would put money on it. Plus as bad as I feel about myself all I have had to do is sit back and watch these runners at the Olympics and think they have to wait another 4 years to try and right a wrong. I guess it could be worse huh.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Happy Birthday Honey !!!

Today is my wife Sonya's b-day !!! I am looking forward to our b-day trail run together today. I am very luck to have her in my life.

24 hours till take off !!

Well I am so close I can taste it. I am so ready to get in the van with the family and head off for our vacation. Just need to finish off packing everything.

I have been feeling ok this week running. Nothing great but nothing bad. Sonya seems to think I am running better than I think. When we have been running this week I feel like we are going pretty easy but she thinks differently. Maybe she is on to something ? I guess we will see. I am just looking to test myself on a great race course. The weather looks wet for race week and race day. Could be muddy !!! I look forward to showing everyone some pictures and sharing some good stories when I am back. See you in like 12 days. Happy trails !!!

P.S thanks to everyone for the well wishes, I appreciate it !!!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Just 2 weeks !!!

So it is less than 2 weeks till the big day !! I am at the stage now where I am starting to pack the stuff I will need just so it is done. Me and the family are going out that way this coming Saturday night. I am thinking of driving Thu the night to make it easy on the kids. Heck them sleeping might be best for me as well.

The running leading up to the race has just been there, nothing special. I always feel this way when resting the last few weeks before a big run. I think last week I got in like 50-55 miles ? I have just been running to stay loose. I did get in one more day on the ski hill with Paul. We knocked out 20 strong repeats. What was nice was that we got to run the last few with Bob Stavig and Greg Allen. Bob has been like a ultra running mentor to Paul and I over the years. This guy has run them all. I think he has like 12+ finishes in Leadville alone, with a few being sub 24 hours. Nothing like seeing the master before heading out of town.

Also this last weekend I was down at Lake Calhoun for the ultra Pat and I where putting on. As you could guess it was a hot one !! Very humid as well. We had 3 50k finishes. Patrick was hoping to shoot for a 100k time to get on this years USA world championships team but today was not the day. My wife Sonya was also in the back of her mind hoping it would be a day to go 62 miles. In the end I think they both did the correct thing and save themselves. I know it was not a easy thing to do for both of them. Keith was also rocking the five fingers for 50k !! I have no idea how he did it but great job. This is all I got for now, I am off to Hyland for a nice trail run tonight !!

1st Annual Twin Cities Ultra Festival

No Finishers :(

Patrick Russell 3:30:49
Sonya Anderson-Decker 4:10:58
Keith Krone 5:08:58

Mark Hanson 4:37:25