Sunday, September 30, 2012

Flesherton Run Clinic

September Totals

Run     319.3km
YTD  2663.6km

Run for the Toad 50K - Sept 29, 2012

 Just ran one of my better trail races this year ,  not perfect but reasonably OK.

 Race start was 09:30 am ,  a bit of  a break from the Summer 6/7/8 am starts.   Had lousy nights sleep dreaming I was helplessly lost in an Ultra without trail markings.   The alarm went off at 05:30 but after a 2 hour drive ,  race kit pick up  and all the usual pre-race things I didn't really seem to wake up until I started putting one foot in front of the other.

 Race plan was to get the 50K done in under 5hrs20min beating last years time.   I planned on going out "fast" and playing the fade.

 Race start was better this year.  The 100+ 50Kers headed out at 09:30am ahead of the 900+ 25K participants....much better then the mass start. .  3K in  I rolled my left Ankle ,  there was a popping sound and it hurt like hell.   First thought was "fantastic now I have a reason to quit".   Well I didn't stop and the pain subsided but never went away.   I gauged the damages and decided it was a light to moderate sprain that would end up with a bit of swelling.  4K in we pass by a bathroom in the campground so I popped in for pee that I had to do before the race started but was too lazy to wait in a line up.   Past the 5K mark I checked the avg pace 6:47 doh!     With 7K left in the first of 4 12.5K loops I decided to pick up the pace and make to the "Skeleton Hill" with an avg 6:30 pace.     With less then a K to go I checked the avg pace at the base of "Skeleton" and it was 6:25. Finsihed lap 1 of 4 on    1hr18min which was at least 8 min off where I thought I should be.  Heading out on the second loop I did my first Gel of the day,  cranked up the music and concentrated on chipping away or maintaining my avg pace.   I was moving allot better on the second loop and ever so slowly continued to chip away at the avg pace.    It had become overcast and I found that I was a bit chilled,  mostly my exposed forearms    I was wearing shorts and a tech T and had my UltraSpire pack on.  Every hour on the hour I took and S Cap and was gelling every 45min to 1 hour.    I had 2L of water with me and was drinking regularly  I was also  grabbing a cup of water at every aide station.  I figured that I had the nutrition  hydration and electrolytes dialed in.  Finished loop 2 in 1hr17min a small improvement over the first loop.  This is where I started to think about beating 5hrs20min.  I felt that I had a 4 minutes banked and all I had to do was maintain my loop 2 pace perhaps slightly slower then pick it up in the final lap.    Half way through the third loop  I started to feel sluggish and  the avg pace was ever slowly increasing.   The Sun was out again and things were really getting warm in the exposed parts of the course.    I felt like I was over heating and was really sweating allot.  It was about this time that I realized that I hadn't been getting enough fluids or electrolytes underestimating the conditions.   So with 18 or so Ks to go I doubled up the S Caps to a 30 min interval and started taking 2 cups of water at the Aide Stations.  Finished the 3rd of 4 laps in 1hr20min giving up all but 1 minute of my banked time.   Heading out on the 4th loop I believed I still had a shot at a sub 5hr20min time but there was very little wiggle room.  I remember thinking to myself that  it was  great motivator to keep me running and prevent me from giving into the urge to back off.   As I progress past each K marker I  redid the numbers and felt always felt like a had a really good chance of achieving the goal so I kept pushing.   Half way through the loop I had planned on one last Gel to give me a much needed finishing kick.    To my surprise I had consumed all 7 Gels and only had a pack of GU Chomps.    I wanted to gulp calories not chew them  but not having any other options I managed to get 3 "Chomps" down ... I was not impressed!!!!   Going into the last couple of Ks I really felt like I still had a shot at my goal so I really started to push even harder.    When I crossed the mat the clock struck 5:21:00 rats,  so very close to my goal.

 So I sat down and quickly thought back to the lousy fist lap knowing that that we where I more or less blew the goal, the unnecessary bathroom break ,  the rolled ankle coming to mind.  But then I realized that I had a pretty solid day running the entire 50K with the exception of the bigger hills.  I didn't give up a single position in the last half of the race and was passing the odd 50ker here and there.    Comparing 2012 and 2012 splits also made me realize that I had a pretty solid day.

Lap        2011     2012                    
  1       1:14:33   1:18:11
  2       1:14:15   1:17:27
  3       1:20:03   1:20:12
  4       1:31:06   1:25:16

Chip time was 5hrs20min58sec good for  56th out of the 125 that showed up at the starting line.  I was 43 out of 86 men and I finished 9th out of 20 in the 50-59 age group.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Durham Run Clinic

 8.1K at an avg 6:42 pace at the Durham Run Clinic last night.  It was a small group ,  mostly Tri Club members but it sure was good company on a stellar Fall Evening.    Noah ,  my 12 year old came along.  On Wed I asked about X Country and he said he wasn't doing it.  Thurs Noah comes home , I have joined team and he had done a 5K at School that day.   A big surprise was that he came along and did the 8.1K constant run with me.   No Run today ,  Toad tomorrow .... working on getting my run on now!  

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Run Clinic

5.1K on the Trail with the Flesherton Run Clinic tonight.

More Trail

11.2K on the trail today.   Wore the Mazunos and the feet were much better .  Going to try the Super Novas at the Run Clinic tonight.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Getting my trail on

10.9K at an avg 7:07 pace today.  After taking it indoors working mids and the Toad looming on Saturday the plan is to do 2 consecutive trail runs T/W/T taking Friday off before Saturdays Toad Run.  Weather was perfect today ,  18C / Sun / Breeze maybe a bit warm but it sure is nice compared to the steamy summer heat.   Weather is looking fantastic for the weekend so we should have a rather pleasant Toad.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Little longer and faster again!

7K at a mostly 5:00 pace this morning.  Little bit of indigestion after a Bagel ,  Giant Coffee and OJ at midnight.

Just registered for the Egg Nog Jog Dec 9 and my first Ultra of 2013 Run for Kids Jan 13 . 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Night 3 of 7

Yet another 2am run  this morning.   Same as yesterday covering 5K at a mostly 5:45 pace.  

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Saugeen Tri Club 5K Run Clinic - Flesherton

1st night of the fall 5K run clinic tonight.  There was at least 20 signed up and I headed out on some awesome trails with a half dozen for a constant run.   We cover 5K at an avg 7:04 pace!  Next 2 weeks I am doing Flesherton on Wed and Durham on Thurs.   I haven't participated in the Durham clinic for a couple of years sop it should be fun.   Wore my new Adidas Super Nova Trail Shoes for the first time.   Got a real nice solid ride from the new kicks.

Another 2am Run

Ditto yesterday,  5K at a mostly 5:45 pace.  The hardest part of running at 2:00 am is getting to the treadmill     but 95% of the time I feel great a K or two into the Run.  5K Flehserton Run Clinic tonight at 6pm.  It will be a quick snack and to bed before 9am this morning.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Bruce Trail - Bayview Nature Preserve

16.3 K done yesterday  on the Bruce Trail.  Did the Bayview Escarpment loop.   Spent a ton of time looking around.  There were some breathtaking views looking east towards Meaford and the Georgian Peaks.   Shot  some video too and will post it when I have had a chance to do some editing.  Bedsides the views and fantastic late summer weather I had a WTF moment when the trail went through a farmers field with 2 Cows that looked more like Woolly Mammoths.  I thought it was a joke at first then decided to do the appropriate thing a reroute around the critters.    

Lunch Run

5K at a 5:45 pace at 02:00 am this morning... night 1. 

 Picked up some new old trail shoes today.  Decided I needed a tougher ,  stiffer more protective shoe and went back to my Adidas Super Nova Shoe!  Also picked up a pair of Injinji Wool Toe Socks today...bring on the wet weather.    

Sunday, September 16, 2012


Saturday Run.

Cool dry air ,  a light breeze from the North and Sunny Skys made for a rather pleasnt 17.9 K run at an avg 6:00 pace.

A little trail

Sundays Run

8.5 K done on the trail today. Tried to get out with Carrie and her Horse but the critter had other ideas so most of my run was done solo. I was planning on going longer but I was hot, hungry and just plain tucker out after yesterdays run followed by 6 hours of post hole digging. So after some grub I grabbed a Beer and floated around the pool for an hour or so!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Friday Eve

Working again and once again I used my meal break for a little fitness.  Didn't feel like doing it but I almost always feel so much better after I have run.   Logged another 5K at a 6:00 pace tonight.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Lunch Run

5K at a 5:45 pace again on my meal break this eve.

McCormick Loop

Got out before it was too warm today.  Logged another 10.2K around the McCormick loop today.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Lunch Run

5K at a little faster 5:45 pace tonight on my meal break.   Was going to hit the trail today but I opted to dig a 3ft deep hole instead!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

2nd run today

5K at a mostly 6:00pace tonight ton my meal break.

Tues after Sun Mon Run

No running Sunday/Monday ...right foot pain and some GI issues yesterday.  Logged 10 K today doing  a loop on gravel roads and tractor trails.   Was going to hit the trail but the heavy dew made things rather wet and I am not keen on wet feet at the moment.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Run Woodstock, Pinckney Mi - Sept 7,8 2012

 Run Woodstock was simply amazing ,  the venue ,  the theme, the race organization and more then anything the hospitality of our American neighbors was second to none!

 Way back in May a thread was posted to RM about this race  and it wasn’t lone before I was signed up for the  50K with the intention of doing all the  3 short fun runs offered Fri/Sat and Sunday.  The various events with the live music sounds like a recipe for a rather fun running weekend    .  After the DG race in August I was leaning towards doing Haliburton instead of Woodstock.  I almost signed up for Hali but when I looked at the cost as well as revisiting the Run Woodstock Web site and Facebook page I decided to stick with my original plans.  A week before the race I resurrected the RM post.  Chris Baker responded and said that after DNFing the Lockport race he was going to give the distance another shot at Woodstock.   I instantly saw an opportunity to turn my weekend into another running adventure and offered to pace him through the night.    The race is done on a 16.7  mile loop and started at 4pm on Friday.   Pacers were allowed to join in on loop 3.  Chris's wife Krista was planning on doping the last two loops so I was in for loops 3 and 4.   Figured I would be done my pacing assignment in time for may race 50K race at 06:00 am. 

 Friday was a kind of a crazy day.  My original plan was to work until noon then leave directly for the race arriving sometime around 4-430 pm ,  plenty of time for the 7:30 pm race.   Well that all changed ....  still left work as planned but had to run some errands and it was 1:30 pm before I was heading in the right direction! First stop was for some decent nutrition at Tims in Durham.  I wanted to order a couple of Chicken Wraps but the drive through was line up onto Hwy 6 and there was a dozen frustrating looking folks hanging out at the food counter ... plan B a Coffee and 2 Oat Cakes.   Getting from home to Sarnia sucks ... no real good direct route and being that I was heading from home instead of work the Hwy 23 option was best.   The traffic sucked  and before I got to Listowell I cut across to Huron County back Rds where there is little traffic and the speed limit is 90Kmh.   Got a little turned around adding an extra 10-15K onto the journey but I still figured I would make it 6:00-6:30 ish.    Traffic was an issues in the Grand Bend. Pt Franks and Forest area !!!!  When I finally made it to the border around 4:30 pm I was nearly out of gas not wanting to stop on the Canadian side and what seemed like light traffic I figured I would have just enough to get to Port Huron.   Coasted down the US side of the Bridge to customs .... no line up so I ,  perfect or so I thought!   US customs was up to something and the  Customs agent said he would have to hold me for a few minutes!  Checked the gas gauge and figured I was OK and then proceed to have a really nice chat about running with the fellow who seemed pretty knowledgeable about the topic.   After a brief delay it was a quick fuel stop and I was off at around 5pm.... still lots  time or so I thought,  Breezed into Detroit ,  breezed through the core but then traffic bogged down as we approached the suburbs ... more frustration.    Anyhow I made it to the race at 7:10 pm ,  exhausted , stressed and needing a little run!    I dashed to get ready and just made it in time for a the live Jimmy Hendrix rendition of the American National Anthem.

  The "Freak 5K"  went off a 7:30pm with a loop around the campground as the band played some Stones Tunes.  My stress was gone and the effort to get to the race had paid off ... I was running at Woodstock. 
There were lots of newbies on the trail,  mostly road shoes.  Helped one fellow who fell off the trail ...twice!  2k into the loop the trail split ,  to the left was the " natural " way ,  to the right was for those who wished to remain dressed.   Finished the loop a little after 8pm.... it was still nice an warm  27C but you could tell that the weather was changing and it wasn't going to be dry.    I was parked about a K from the start/finish and headed back to the car to grab my waiver to pick up my race kit..... didn't find the paper work!    Headed back to the start finish ,  signed new waver  then realized that I didn't eat since Tims.  Grabbed three very small Slices of Pizza and chatted with another pacer from Toledo.    Checked in at the timing tent and saw that Chris had completed his first loop at 7:09 pm,  3hrs9minutes a wee bit fast I thought for the 27+C temps and high humidity    Figured Chris would be back in around 10:30 pm ... projected ahead and figured we would do a couple of 3.5 to 3.75 hour loops  leaving me just enough time to get to the start of my 50K race at 06:00 am .      Headed back to the car to prepare for my  pacing assignment and my 50K race that followed.     

 While I was getting ready it started to rain.  By the time I had everything organized it started to pour and the temperature plunged.    I remember looking at the clock ,  it was 9:45 pm I was warm,  dry and quite comfortable in my car and was having some serious second thoughts about what I was about to do or not do.  My feet are still not fully recovered after DGs 4 weeks ago.  I originally had my usual Thoro's on but they acted like sponges in the wet so I changed to some thin socks that I haven't worn in wet conditions.  Another last minute addition was adding my Shell to my Ultra Aspire pack.     Nearing 10pm the rain as pounding down even harder.  My thoughts turned to Chris... he started loop 2 in the daylight and 27C heat and was now running in the dark,  wet and very cool!   I decided that unless the rain let up I wasn't going to go out and would snooze in my car until my event started.  I felt really bad for Chris  and I was wondering how much he was counting on a pacer.   I know he didn't plan on it  for loops 3 and 4 until I offered so I figured he probably wouldn't be too disappointed if I was a no show or at least I tried to convince myself that that is how he would feel.   So I decided that it the rain let up in the next 10 minutes I would head out and if it didn't I would make myself comfortable and set an alarm for 5am.     As the clock struck 10pm the rain stopped and I was committed.  I was relived that Mother Nature made such a decisive call and I was off to pace Chris though loops 3 and 4. 

 Arrived at the 100 Mile tent ,   it housed the Timer, Aide Station and  Drop Bag area.   The tent was abuzz with anticipation ,  excitement and disappointment.  I checked the score board and was surprised to see 140+ runners in the 100 miler and was equally surprised to see a number of dropouts!  It was after 11pm and there was no sign of Chris ,  the loop was taking much longer then I thought it would.    The race officials were setting up a powerful heater in the drop bag area.   It was weird watching everyone coming through I really felt like I should be a participant not standing on the sidelines.  11:30 passed 4+hrs into to Chris's second loop.  Sometime between then and midnight Chris came in.   I quickly joined him,  asked if he still wanted me to go out with him and  it didn't take long for him to confirm that I was heading out with him.   I started in on my pacing assignment making sure that he got lots off food and drink.  I refilled his bladder but it was totally not need as it was already more or less full.   I was concerned because the first 1.5 loops were in 27+C heat so I assumed that he hadn't been drinking enough.    He was also complaining of swollen hands.    Chris had salt pills with him but hadn't taken any yet ,  I looked in his pack but couldn't find them.  I offered him my S Caps but he declined so we headed out.    This was Chris's first pacer experience so I suggested a couple of different ways we could approach things.  I let him lead for awhile but  that didn't seem to work so where is was open we ran side by side and I lead through the single track.   Chris stopped felt like he had to pee but every time he tried nothing would come out.  I figured that his body wasn't processing the fluids and insisted he have an S Cap at the first aide station.     The weather was really turning miserable,  the rain continued to fall and so did the temperatures.  The course was getting quite mucky in places and the water was beginning to pool.   I was wet , very wet and my feet were soaked and I was  worried about staying warm  but this wasn't about me  this was about getting Chris to the finish line.  8 miles into the loop there was a second aide station with lots of food options.   I made sure that Chis ate ,  drank and did another S Cap.  We didn't stay long but it was an effective stop.   The last half of the 16 mile loop was more difficult ,  lots of mucky deepely grooved single track with the odd rock and root hazardous to keep you on your toes.   On a positive note Chris started to pee  and the swelling was starting to subside.  The rain let up long enough to make us believe that it was over but just when we were starting to feel comfortable it poured again.    Chris was still moving very well but was concerned about finishing in a good time.   I told him we had  tons of time and that he could walk it home if he need to.  I told him that his only concern should be to finish and keep moving along.    He was worried about his potion relative to the others ... I told him that there were folks scattered throughout the course and there were as many behind as there were ahead of us.  There was a Woman from Texas running solo that we kept leap frogging.  We had some really good conversation that helped us to forget what we were doing and put some easy miles behind us.   We also kept leap frogging the pacer fro Toledo that I had meet hours earlier.  We were having fun and things were going pretty well until we neared the end of  loop 3.  The last 5K were nasty.  The course was pretty flat with no monster hills ideal for a 100 miler but what elevation there was occurred near the end.   It was rolling ,  mucky ,  slippery in spots and rather rough as we inched back to the start finish.   Between loops 3 and 4 we had a really productive sit down stop.    Chris downed 3  cups of hot pasta soup and changed into some dry and water proof clothing.  He ate and drank and we found his salt pills so he started in on them.  The stop was 5-10 minutes but it really made a difference.  I didn't have any dry clothes and was absolutely freezing starting to shiver. I didn't really feel like going back out but there was no way I was going to bail on Chris.   Because Chris had consumed so much I told him to walk the first K or two to allow his stomach to process the food and walk we did but I was having a tough go getting warm. It wasn't until we started to shuffle along again that I began to feel comfortable.  Chris was slowing down but I was still able to keep him moving along at a reasonable pace.   I would start running at a slow a pace as you can run  and Chris would be walking behind me.  I would ever so gradually pick up the pace until Chris broke into a run and then I would hold it there was long as possible.  Chris was now peeing allot ,  so much so that it began to freak him out thinking that something was wrong.   I told him that we would skip the salt pill at the next aide station!    It was still raining and the standing water became small unavoidable lakes.  The temperature continued to drop and the aide stations were full of semi hypothermic runners huddled around propane heaters ... how many had dropped I thought to myself.   Reaching the halfway point in loop 4 I once again set Chris down and had him eat 3 glasses of very hardy beef noodle soup.  Chris breathing was getting quite labored and he really need more calories .... soup,  bananas ,  ham and cheese sandwiches and an Orange GU Gel for desert.  My rule of thumb with Chris was if he was sitting on his ass he better be filling his face!   It was 8 miles back to the start finish ,  we  started slowly again to give Chis a chance to process his food.  Lack of hills meant very little walking so this was also a good break from  running.   Chris best  statement of the day was spoken " This is really hard"   ....  I  laughed and said something to the affect that if it wasn't hard he wouldn't be doing it!  Chris was now having a tough time running and was doing more walking.    His breathing was always labored when we were moving along but we kept going forward.   Chris was really beginning to worry that he was not going to have enough time to finish and I was constantly telling him not to worry and that he had tons of time to finish and if he had to he could walk it home with plenty of time to spare.   Just before sunrise the rain had stopped and a nice drying breeze had pick up.  I pointed out Venus in the east through some broken clouds and knew that better conditions were ahead.    Loop 4 was much slower then anticipated ,  wet muck conditions and the fact that Chris was closing in on 70 mile added an hour to our anticipated time. 
Chris was concerned about me missing my 50K race ,  I lied to  him telling him I would start the race late!  My feet were really sore after nearly 8 hours of running in the wet.  I was more then content pacing Chris instead on doing my event.  My "Woodstock Adventure"  with Chris was far better than any 50K I would do .... it really didn't matter!  By 08:00 am the sun was up and we were closing on the start finish    Unfortunately the shorter 5 and 10K races were being run and there was constant traffic coming at us from both directions so much so it was dizzying at times.  This was really hard for Chris to take and made the tough section all that much tougher as we were constantly stepping off the course.    It was 09:00 and when we emerged from the forest into  the campground area.  Krista was there ready to go and she ran into the tent with us.   Once again Chris was really in need of calories and we sat him down  and made sure he was eating.    I filled Krista in with all the what happened overnight and what she needed to do going forward.    They headed back out at 09:15 am  with 12hrs45 minutes to complete 2 16 mile loops.   Chris had ample time to finish his first 100 miler and could walk it home and most likely be finished before night fall.  As we parted ways they wished me luck on my race.  I just smiled and thanked them knowing that there was no way I was heading back out. 

 Satisfied that I had achieved yet another great 2012 running adventure I packed up my car,  downed a  Red Bull and headed home.  I spent the entire drive and most of the  thinking about Chris and Krista closing in the  finish. 

PS ... I wrote this before I knew how Chris made out but I am betting on  the face that he finished up around 9pm. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Up next Woodstock!

One last 5K lunch run today,  tomorrow I am off to Michigan at noon for " Run Woodstock".

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Lunch again

Same as yesterday ,  5K at a 6:00 pace logged on my lunch break.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Sunday, September 2, 2012

98 Minutes

98 Minutes on the Trail today covering 12.8K at an avg 7:43 pace.   Was wanting to do something longer and faster perhaps on the road but sticking to the trail is the best thing I an do for whats coming up.   The weather was ideal!   A cool night with temps in the low single digits ,  dry air , a nice breeze and amazing Sun made for some rather pleasant condition's in the forest in spite of the temps soaring to the high 20's.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

September Trail

 Its quite appropriate that the first  run of Sept was an 11.6K trail!    Next 4 events are in the woods ,  next weekend Woodstock  5K race Fri Eve , 50K Warm up Fri night through Sat morn then at 06:00 am its my 50K run followed by I believe an 8k event in the Eve.  At the end of Sept its the 50K Toad followed by 50K Vulture Bait and 6 Hour Horror Hill in Oct.   Fun fall trail running for sure!