Tuesday, August 31, 2010

What's next ?

That is the million dollar question I guess. What is next? I had hoped to be in really good shape and getting ready to run the North Face 50 mile in a few weeks in Wisconsin but that just is not in the cards as of now. Sometime life throws you curve balls and you need to adjust to the pitch. The funny thing is I spend each and every day telling people that at the store ( TC Running Company ) but sometime it is hardest to take your own advice. But as I just got done telling my good buddy Chris, Running is so great because it is a life long adventure and you never know where you might end up next in this sport. Nothing compares sport wise to that. Nothing!!

So here is what I am thinking about this fall. Maybe running some shorter trail and road races to keep stuff fresh ? Then maybe do either the Fall 50 mile road race in Door County and/or still go out to North Face 50 mile trail in December with the crew? There is always Surf the Murph 50 mile ? I got to do a 50 mile if I want any chance of going to Western States 100 next year. Heck looking at the great pictures from last weeks run on the SHT I still have that desire to run the whole dam length of that trail. Like I said we will see where I go. If I could only be like Helen huh, I could go everywhere.

I would like to send out a little shout out to Chris as he leaves tomorrow for the World Mt. Running Championships in Slovenia. Go get em man! Also would like to say congrat's to my buddy Matty G on getting engaged over the weekend. Good times dude, good times.

Oh yea one last thing. Thanks to all the TC Running team members out there. I love looking at blogs, facebook entries and such and seeing you all with your TCRC shirts on. I am very proud to have you all in my corner. Thanks!

(This is a video from this years Leadville 100. It give a good look into the race)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Ragnar 193 mile Relay with the Class of 90

Wow what a few days I had last weekend. I was luck to be on a team of old classmates for the Ragnar relay race from Winona to Minneapolis; all in all 193 miles of heat, hills, and no sleep. Many months ago when my friend Steve asked me about running with the guys on a Armstrong class of 90 team I thought the idea was pretty cool, but I had no idea until race day how cool it could be.

So as one could imagine not everyone had kept training like crazy the last 20 year. But that did not matter as it was all about getting it done and in my mind showing some Falcon/ coach Kleyman pride. I was in van #1. We where short 1 guy so Steve, Rob H, and myself each had to run 1 extra leg. That was no big deal as all three of us had been running the most from the group.

Leg 1: After taking the tag from Steve I raced out along the road. I tried to stay nice and easy as I knew I had lot's of running ahead of me on the day. The sun was out and it was hot and muggy. I felt good making my way along the road. I was also super glad to have my Garmin on to keep me in check, but I was also happy that the pace felt very easy. Leg one was a pretty non eventful one for me. I was excited to see my team as I handed back off to Steve after 6.2 miles of running. I believe I averaged 6:55 pace for the leg.

Leg 2: As I was about to start my second leg I was starting to feel that competitive twitch in me start. Having both team vans there to see me off was big. I was very proud to be there with them and wanted to show them I would not let them down and run a great leg. The sun was going down so that also made me excited as I love running that time of day. After getting the tag from Steve I set off on what looked like on paper as a hilly both up and down leg. In the first few miles there was like millions of nats bugs flying around. Made for some good protein snacks! I was feeling great keeping the pace at like 6:30ish. As I made my way toward the big 2.5 mile hill I knew to do what I do in the ultra's and crank it down a bit pace wise and keep a good rhythm. I can not tell you how great I was feeling as I passed people and as each 1/2 mile went by I was getting more and more excited about passing people. At the top of the climb I got a water and just said let er rip. On the long down hill I was keeping the pace around 5:55 to 6:00 min pace. I think I passed like 12 people alone on that hill. As I approached the end of the leg there was one more runner in front of me. I put my head down and pushed all the way to the end. What a feeling, I crushed it!! It was one of those times I wanted to just keep going and going. In the end I was like 5min's faster than Steve and hoped. I averaged 6:53 pace( with lots of the leg at 6:30 pace or better) on one hell of a 8.4 mile run.

Leg 3&4: This is where it was getting hard. Dude I was so tired from the long day. We had just slept in the car for 1 1/2 hours and I could not stop feeling droggy but I knew I needed to get it together as once Steve started I had only like 19 min's or so till I was up. Seeing Matt Wendorf come in running so hard over the bridge got me going. Hell the team was trying hard so I needed to man up. When Steve tagged me it was like 4:30ish in the morning? and I was easing into the start of my run? crazy. After the early 1/4 mile I started to get my groove. There was not many people to chase at this point, it was all me and my mind. I broke the run into two parts. The first leg of 3.8 miles then then the last leg of 3.4 miles. I was shocked at how good I was feeling running so hard with no sleep at this time of day. I went thru the first leg at 6:44 pace. Now came the hard part. I wanted to keep fyling along but my head was saying dude there is no body to chase and you are tired. I am pound to say I kept pushing. I crossed the line in 22:23 for the segment which was 6:37 pace. Boom I was done and real excited.

Over the next few hours I watched my team push themselves as hard as they could and I felt good. Good about how I ran and good about being a Armstrong Falcon!! I am very proud of each runner on the team, we all did the best we could on that day. The guys are already talking about doing it next year. I am not sure yet if I will be able to but I know if it works out I will be there as one of "Ricks Kid's" (coach K) and proud of it.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Baby Steps

So far so good I guess this week. I have been trying to take it one step at a time. With this recurring abdomen pain over the last few months I have been scared to do to much and push to hard. You know 2 sports hernia surgeries in the last 3+ years does that to a guy. I have talked to a few people and am taking the approach that it could just be scar tissue beaking a bit and not a new tear. Nock on wood it is that. Trying to stretch allot more and working with Dr. Folske every week doing active release might just work. I know I need to just plug along and get the work in and look for that one race to get my 50 miler in so I can out in for Western States 100 lottery next year. At first I was looking to do 2 more 50 mile races this fall but know I am holding with one. Who knows with this extra race taken out I can do some other races in the area. I would love to try some shorter races and challenge myself to try and be faster once more.

One of the highlights last week for me was my wife Sonya's great birthday long run. She has a tradition of doing a long trail run on her birthday so we went out to Afton state park with a few of our friends. Paul, Kim, Arica joined Sonya and I for a hot but great trail run. If you do not remember last Sunday it was like 99' out side with the heat index well over 100!! After many miles first Paul and I then Sonya went into the St. Croix river for a great post run swim. Man it was great. Now I know what Helen loves about doing this. I used to do this but life is busy with 3 kids so most of the time for Sonya and I it is run then go home. It was a great reminder to make time for this kind of stuff.

So far this week has been pretty good. We had a great group run today out at Hyland with Josh, Andy and the boys coming for the first time. Welcome guys and please come aging soon. Hope everyone has a great weekend and see you soon on the trails. Oh yea also check out the NEW TC Running Company blog I just started. It should be lots of fun with a new blog post every week about fun stuff at the store and things the store is doing in our great running community. I also hope to do Q & A's with lots of different people. Lastly there are links to many TCRC people's blog as well. Let me know what you would like to see on there.

*This video is from the upcomming USATF 10k trail championships. Give it a try.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Where to start

Well lot's has gone on in my life since the last time I posted anything. Only thing is most of the fun stuff has been non running stuff. Hmm I guess that is ok as well if you ask me. As I am sure anyone who has followed this blog for some time now has seen my running has been up and down more than a roller coaster the last few months, well maybe the last year or so ? I have been stuck in this funk for sometime now where things are not great but not horrible yet either. I have not been to happy about it but at the same time have been just trying to enjoy each day for all it has brought to me. Hell some days have great trail runs with guys like Darius one of my workers at the store or great road runs with Nick and or Jason. Then some days like today I feel like I am going to die. Oh well got to take the good with the bad and overall I am lucky to have lots of good in my life. Here is some of the highlight the last week or so
My little boy Evan had his 4th B-day party which was super fun. It is so great to see him grow up and become such a great little boy. Hell we had good cross training with the moon walk. Maybe a idea before the next ultra?

Evan and I each ran in the Hennepin Lake Classic races this last Sunday. I have always liked this race as it has been around a long time. Plus it was at this race Sonya and I first started talking to each other many years ago and it was just 4years ago we brought the few day old Evan to his first road race to meet all the nice MN runners. Evan did the kids 1/4 mile and I did the 10k and 5k double header as a good training run. With any luck things will get going better so I can run the North Face Madison race in late September.

I am going to leave you with this video I just found with super sud Max King from team Montrail. I hope this week finds many good miles of running ahead of both you and I. Enjoy the running and remember life is to short to be caught up to much in what's wrong, hell what's wright is what I am looking at one step at a time.