Thursday, December 31, 2009


I got the MT100's in yesterday and have worn them around today. I'm not saying too much yet, but so far they are pretty damn nice. They are very much what I look for in a shoe. Majorly lightweight, flexible, no extra cushioning, or other crap that we don't need. So far, so good!
So on a training note, I'm out and about doing a little running here and there and feeling pretty good, so I'm gonna pick up the mileage this weekend and see how I'm feeling. Like I said before, it's gonna take me busting my hump to get ready for Rocky. Six 50 milers this year was a rockin year for me and I'm hopin my body will remember. Of course, it may remember, and then say, "Oh, HELL NO!" ha

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Am I a Scrooge?

I have to honestly say that I am so glad the Holidays are over! They wear me the Hell out!
Maybe I can focus now. I'm seriously wondering if I will be able to get ready for a 50 miler in 5 weeks. I think I may be really cutting it close. I'll really need to bust my ass! Anybody have thoughts on that? If not Rocky Raccoon then maybe Cross Timbers?
I've been training a lot in my Fivefingers, however, I went ahead and ordered a new pair of the MT100's by New Balance. I just don't think that you should skimp on the rock protection offered by a good trail shoe during an ultra. I think that running Rocky in the Fivefingers would be a blast simply because that course is so amazingly soft!
Ok, so it'll be interesting to see what my body can do within five weeks. The race is on!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Howdy Again

Ok, so I've been told that my blog is sucking. Point well taken.
I am, believe it or not, still alive and kicking! I was out of running for most of November due to an old back injury flare up but I'm back in the saddle and ramping up for Rocky Raccoon 50 in February. Following that I have plans to race Bataan in March. Dave "I'm Your Huckleberry" Elliott invited me to go and I thought "Hell yeah!" Bataan is an amazing race, and I highly recommend it. Dave will be going heavy, carrying a 35 lb rucksack on his back. That scares me, quite frankly. I prefer running 26.2, rather than slogging along with a big pack on my back, so KUDOS to you, Dave! Hoorah!
I am still trying to wrap my brain around a 100 miler for this next year but haven't decided which one as of yet. Anyone know of a good 100 miler out there that feels more like 50? ha
Anyway, I will be back on board with the blog thing more often and keep ya all posted!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

9/24/09 What's UP???

Hey all! Thought I'd better post something before my blog gets deleted. Obviously I haven't been keeping up with it for the last couple of months. I've definitely been running though! Ran Lean Horse a month ago and now am ramping up for Palo Duro. I'm trying to find the time to get back on here and start putting back in some reports and training posts............or I may give up the blogging business all together. Facebook has become a little more my speed and I've enjoyed keeping tabs on my running buddies on there! So in the meantime if your curious about what I'm up to, just click on my Facebook link. I'd be happy to add ya as a friend if you're not there already! Peace!

Monday, July 27, 2009

7/27/09 Where I need to be!

Ok, guys, so I am finally getting back into the groove of things. My mileage is looking much better and things are starting to look pretty good for Lean Horse. I went ahead and got registered too so that keeps me honest in my training. Yesterday brought a gorgeous sunset and a nice, steady 20 mile run with Aubrey. I am feeling stronger and stronger. Such a difference from earlier this year. But as my friend, Dave, told me, "Mark, you're running 50 milers like most people run 5k's." No wonder I was feeling a little tired. Anyway, I've had a nice break but now it's time to get back into the racing. I've dropped abut 10 lbs over the last couple of months down to about 165 too. I think that's made a pretty significant difference in how I feel out there too. I would like to, honestly, take off another 5-10 lbs but I have a feeling it's going to be easier said than done. I really do like FOOD!! Ok, so another cool thing is that Aubrey is finally getting back into the swing of things as well. He is running the 50 miler with me at Lean Horse so it should be a good trip. I'll try and keep ya posted. Peace!

Friday, July 17, 2009

7/17/09 Gross Blog Negligence

Oops! I keep forgetting to post for some reason. Actually I know the reason...........Farm Town and Vampire Wars on Facebook or "Crack"Book, whichever you want to call it! Crazy addicting stuff! I'm in here screaming, "I CAN SEND A CHICKEN NOW!!" Ridonkulous!!
My running on the other foot is going very, very well! I'm putting in some good mileage! Last week held about 30 or so miles, and as a matter of fact, next week I am looking at a 50-60 mile week! I'm feeling great and moving well. Most of my training is done at about an 8 to 8.5 min pace. Pretty steady for me. Lean Horse is looking good right now and I'm hoping to pick up the pace there as well. The course itself makes for a good chance for a PR. I'm not sure that I want to post a goal time or not since it kind of locks ya in! ha I may and I may not! I'll try and keep ya posted. In the meantime, if you need me to send you a goat or a donkey for your Farm, let me know!! Peace!

Friday, July 3, 2009

7/3/2009 Three Cheers for Ebay!!

Alright now, I've been running pretty consistently for the last couple of weeks and have really noticed a difference in how I'm feeling! I really think that my "rediscovered" need to run has to do with ONE thing! The La Sportiva Slingshot! As I've mentioned before, these are my favorite shoes of all time and the company discontinued them a couple of years ago. Anyway, I did some searching and found a total of 3 pairs in my size on Ebay (by luck alone!). I went for my first run in them almost two weeks ago and just felt like I was really connected to the Earth again. I know it all sounds weird and corny but I've been hopping from shoe to shoe to shoe since they discontinued the Slingshot, trying to find one that would make me happy and just haven't found "The One." I really, really cannot stand a heavy or clunky/bulky shoe and so many trail shoes are that way. The Slingshot is so light and form-fitting, and so minimal, that it is exactly what I like. I can feel the ground beneath my feet, the little pebbles and subtle imperfections in the dirt that go unnoticed in traditional trail shoes. Anyway, I am going to use up these three pairs and then figure out what to do from there. I am seriously considering running permanently in Fivefingers KSO's or Sprints. But until these Slingshots are worn out, I am going to rock it out! I've lost about 7 pounds in the last couple of weeks so now I'm down to about 166! On the right path, I think. I'll post a little bit in the next couple of days about my Tabata's that I'm doing! They are freaking painful but MAN, do they get results! Peace!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

6/28/2009 Here we go again!

Ok, back on track! Obviously I've been out of pocket for the last couple of weeks but things are being put back in order. I've been able to get out and run pretty much every morning before work and have been feeling pretty terrific. My mileage for week before last was about 25 miles and then last week was about 20. I took this weekend off to watch friends rock it out at the Buffalo Springs Lake Ironman 70.3. My friend, Stanton, came up from Wichita Falls and stayed the weekend with us. This was his first half Ironman and he really did well, finishing in 6:18. Aubrey set a PR for his 70.3, finishing in 6:44. The weather was really perfect I thought. It rained for a good part of the bike leg which kept the temps down. One poor kid, about 16 years old, bit it hard right at the entrance to T2. He took the turn too sharp on the slick asphalt and went elbows and assholes over the handle bars. I felt sorry for him cuz he did get pretty banged up with road rash but he went on to finish his race since he was only doing the sprint distance.
Aubrey hosted a couple of pro guys and one pro girl at his house this year. Both guys are Australian and one of them, Leon Griffin, won the 70.3 last year in a time of 3:58!! Freaking crazy! Today, he took second in 4:03 and the other guy, Simon Thompson, took 3rd! It was really cool hanging out with those guys! They were interesting, funny, and just downright cool to talk to! The girl, Uli Bromme, was born in Germany and then raised in Canada. She's only run a couple of races as a pro and she finished this race in 4:55, a fantastic time! And to top the day off, Aubrey's stepson, Geoff, ran the sprint and finished 46th out of 211 finishers! Kickin some ass!!

So it was a fun, fun weekend but the work will start again tomorrow. I am picking up the mileage a little this week and also plan on incorporating the Tabata Method into my workouts a couple of times a week. That should be pretty interesting........and painful! I'll keep ya posted!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

6/11/2009 Sabbatical!

Ok, everyone! Hear ye, Hear ye! I am making the official announcement that I am going to take a short sabbatical from LOOOOOONG distance running for a couple of months! My body be tired and used up and I am wanting to rest for a bit! I am taking a week or so off from running completely and then I will pick it back up again pretty quick cuz otherwise I'll go crazy! I am still thinking about the Lean Horse 100 in August so we'll see what happens. Anyway, til then, PEACE!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

5/31/2009 Time to Taper

I got in a 20 mile training run today before noon luckily. It was hot, hot, hot! I felt freaking slow! Not sure why. My times weren't that bad but I guess I just felt sluggish. Kelli had to bring me some more water about 15 miles in due to the heat. I was really putting down the fluids. I also had her bring me a Coke and man, it was good! I just love that rocket fuel while on long runs.
So I will run a couple more times before Wednesday and then nothing til Saturday. I was contemplating bumping back to the 50K but it wasn't in my heart to do so. I'm just going to let chips lay and see what happens. Wish me luck! Peace!

Monday, May 25, 2009

5/25/2009 Quick update

Ok, so 10 miles out on 1585 rounded out my 3 day weekend. I felt really good out there despite the wind and heat. Heading into the west I had a 20mph sandblaster in my face and then with the wind at my back on the way back east, I got toasted by the sun. I love to run in the heat! That way I don't have to wear long sleeve shirts all the damn time. ha Alright, let's see what kind of mileage I can get out of this week. May the motivation be with me!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

5/23/2009 Actually Did Something Today!!

First off, THANK YOU to everyone who wished me a happy birthday yesterday!! I really appreciate it! I had a nice evening with Kelli and the kids. We went to Abuelo's and stuffed ourselves with fantastic Tex-Mex then came home, ate chocolate cake, and watched Rise of the Lycans. Nice and relaxing! Just the way I like it!

I actually hit the road today and really felt good. I ran a simple little 6 miles out on 1585. It was overcast and cool with some sprinkling rain mixed in. Fantastic running weather!! All in all, like I said, I felt really good and strong. I need to get some distance in over the next week to get ready for Hell's Hills but I really do think that my base will carry me through. If not........c'est la vie! It'll be fun anyway!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

5/21/2009 Offer Me Some Motivation...........please!

Hey, guys! Ok, so what's up???? I CANNOT get myself motivated this week! I am eating crap, crap, and more crap! I haven't run since last Sunday! I've done a "little" strength training but that's it! I'm gonna turn into a fat ass if I don't get going! Hell's Hills is in 2 weeks!! Someone out there has the right kind of motivational speech to offer me! I just know they do! Lay it on me! Come on, Tony? Dave? Rick? PJ? Someone help a brutha out! Peace!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

5/17/2009 Lazy SOB

Dudes and dudettes, I've been mega-lazy this last week. I ran the Horseshoe Bend 11 miler last Saturday and then an 8 miler on Monday then nothing else until today! I DID do some strength training but nothing exceptional. Not sure what the deal was other than maybe I just needed a break. I had planned on running a long run yesterday back out at the canyon but it was chilly and raining throughout the day. At least that's my excuse. ha Today brought beautiful weather so I headed out to 1585 for some speedwork. I ran a simple little 5 miles in really fast interval bursts. Those kinds of workouts just kill me! At times I would glance at my Garmin and during my bursts I was actually running a 5:30 pace. WHOA! Maybe I DID need the week break afterall!! Watch out, Rick, I may actually catch your speedy ass someday!! haha
Hopefully I can dig deep and drag my ass out of bed earlier this week so I can pick up the mileage again. Hell's Hills is less than 3 weeks out!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

5/9/2009 Horseshoe Bend Canyon.......Revisited

This morning the kids and I ran the Horseshoe Bend Canyon Run with the WTRC. Zach, Makenzie, and one of Zach's baseball buddies, KC, ran the two miler and all medaled. The boys ran a 9:03 pace and finished 1 second of each other. Makenzie ran a 10:56 pace and finished as the first girl in her age group. I think she needs to push herself a little harder next time. She's a more natural runner than Zach but I think she got a little lazy today. However, they all had a blast! This was KC's first time to run a race and he really enjoyed himself! KC is FAST when it comes to running bases so I would like to see him drop the hammer at one of these races next time as well! Also one of my friends from work, Robert, ran the 11 miler and rocked it! He took first in his age group, running an 8:08 pace!
I had a fantastic race myself! I ran the 11 miler and finished in 1:38. Not bad for me, an 8:55 pace over 11 miles. I felt really good out there and again enjoyed the hell out of the scenery. It's so gorgeous out there! There was a really good turnout for all of the races too which always makes it fun.

Ok, on to more training! PEACE!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

5/2/2009 A Morning Run with Huckleberry

My friend, Dave Elliott, came to town today for a nice morning run. His cousin is getting married this evening in Levelland and we took the opportunity to meet up and run a fun-filled, misty morning 15 mile hill workout. He showed up at my house around 8am and we took my Xterra out to Horseshoe Bend Canyon, just east of Buffalo Spring Lake. Horseshoe Bend is really a nice place to run, being a large part of the bike course for the Buffalo Springs Lake Ironman 70.3. The traffic is very minimal and the scenery is nice, nice, nice. There are 3 significant, long hills out there and we hit them all, including the steepest north one twice. All in all we had a fantastic time talking and just enjoying the views and the nice cool weather. The time passed relatively quickly and the 15 miles was done before we knew it. Dave said that he had pushed himself a little harder than he normally does which is fantastic! It's always motivating to run with new people that can inspire you and push you a little more. Hopefully I was able to do both! ha Dave got some good pics of the scenery and should post them to his blog as soon as he gets home. I had a great time and can't wait to meet up with him on the trail again sometime soon!

Friday, April 24, 2009


Howdy everyone! Ok, so I finished up my last night in the ER on Wednesday night! I'll still work little 4 hr shifts there from time to time to keep my skills sharp and also to remind me why I left. ha I haven't run at all since Rocky Hill and that's no good. I feel like I needed the break but it's time to start getting busy again. I am definitely planning on heading back down there for the inaugural (and free) running of Hell's Hills 50. The course from what I could tell is a lot of fun and I think I'll have a good time running it. Hopefully I can coerce Aubrey into joining me for this trip and he can run the 25K. I'll keep ya posted and let ya know what's up.
I'm headed to Dallas this weekend for my cousin's wedding and then I'll hit the road hard come Monday. Peace!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

4/19/2009 Rocky Hill Ranch is a Washout this year!

Zach and I headed towards Smithville around 6am. We made good time and got there around 1:30pm. On the way, Matt Crownover called me and warned me that if I was bringing Kelli and Makenzie along for their first camping would be their last! He said that they, the Crownovers, had made it down there the night before and the rains had soaked everything. It had also been hailing some. Once Zach and I got there the rains had picked back up again and it was just a sloggy mess! The saloon at Rocky Hill Ranch was flooded and the electricity was off for a bit as well. My plan was to pitch the tent as usual but the ground was so wet that I knew it would make for an absolutely miserable night. We decided to just sleep in the Xterra. It was pretty cramped with all the camping gear in there but we did ok. I had supper with the Crownovers and the Teasters and had a really great time. The food was fantastic and so was the company. Zach and I headed to the car and got settled in and watched a movie before we retired. We all still had hopes that the race would go off as scheduled but we just weren't sure. Matt had decided to drop down to the 50K since he is in for Western States this year and didn't want to chance an injury in the mud and slop going the full 50 miles. I got up around 4am and got myself ready. The rains had stopped pretty much for the night but you could tell the weather was pretty ominous, even in the dark. Buddy and I met up and walked the mile to the race start. People were showing up late, including Joe and Joyce. So weird for one of their races to be like that! But with the weather the way it was, it was understandable. They had had a really hard time the day before because their truck got stuck in the mud and they had to have a tow truck pull them out! Anyway, before he started the race he let us know that, if there was ANY lightning, he would be cancelling the race. The safety of the runners and his volunteers is definitely the most important thing. So a little after 5am we took off! The first 50 feet or so were ok and then we hit the mud! Sloppy, sticky, and soul-sucking! ha My feet were each about 10lbs heavier! Then the rain started and the whole loop, which I felt was about 12 miles long, was like running in a stream the whole time! It rained, it poured, it was dark, and it was FUN!! It was a lot like being a kid again and not worrying about getting dirty or wet cuz you had NO CHOICE! There were a couple of steep areas where you just had to "ski" down and then spin your way to the top on the other side! It was terrific fun! However, all fun must come to an end! The lightning started about 15 minutes into the loop and we knew that he would be calling us off. It was pretty impressive, the lightning. Striking the ground in some areas and lighting up the course. Some of the 50 milers actually turned around and just headed back. I never even thought of that! Most of us just kept plugging around the loop enjoying ourselves and acting like kids. We knew he had called it when the two aid stations we ran through were like ghost towns! Anyway, I made it back around to the race start and found out for sure that it had been cancelled. I made it back to the Xterra and accidentally scared Zach who had just started watching a movie in the front seat! ha It was only 8am at that time and he hadn't been awake for more than 10 minutes! Boy, did HE miss all the fun! I headed to the shower, ironically, to rinse off and get the mud off of my shoes and legs and then I got back to the car and dried off (which is hard to do in the rain) and we headed out! I was so ready to be warm and dry! The trip home took a helluva lot longer than the trip down I thought.
I never saw Teresa after the race to ask about the Grand Slam and what we needed to do about it but I suspect she'll be in touch. We got to see our awards on Friday night and they are pretty dang cool! Once I got home, there was an email from Joe explaining his decision to cancel, which really didn't need explaining. However, the cool part of the email was that we can all head back down there on June 6th and give it another whirl! He is offering all of the distances, a start/finish, minimal aid, and awards for people to come back. And in light of this catastrophic weekend, he has changed the name of the race to Hell's Hills! Very cool! We can even invite our friends and we all get to run FOR FREE! So if you read this and you want to head down to Smithville, you have an opportunity to enjoy a great run and great company! So come one and come all, let's have some FUN!
So I've got to decide what to do now. I will probably head back down there and run the 50 miler again! I am leaning toward running the Lean Horse 100 this August instead of volunteering at TransRockies. So Hell's Hills will be a great training run for Lean Horse!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

No Running for ME today......even if I wanted to!

This post is happening about 4:36pm and it started raining and hailing about 15 minutes ago. The hail is not huge but sounds like cannons going off inside the house! Both of my kids are wigging out, thinking they aren't gonna make it through this HELL! ha I told them to sit down and shut up. It's still hailing while I write so I figure if I still have an internet connection, the world isn't coming to an end! Enjoy the pics! Peace!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

4/15/2009 Rocky Hill ready!

The last one in the bunch coming up! I am ready to git er done! It'll just be Zach and I again, camping out at the race start. Also the Crownovers will be close at hand and that will be great for Zach. He loves spending time hanging out with Noah and Micah just romping through the woods and fields. Good times! This course should prove to be a little bit more diverse than the Grasslands and hopefully I will be a little more engaged. I feel pretty well trained up and am feeling pretty good the moment. ha Teresa McCoul sent out an email and she is giving the Grand Slam finishers a spaghetti dinner on Friday night and a barbecue Saturday evening after the race. I, personally, think that's pretty cool. She's even offering veggie options for us weirdo veggie-people there. ha Alright, so, let's see how it goes!
I'm ready for a couple months of rest and relaxation. Also getting settled into the new job, starting Monday, April 27th. I can't wait for that! Peace!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

4/9/2009 New Outlook!!

Alright, so the last few days have brought a total of 15 miles or so out on 1585. I'm feeling strong and ready to go. I plan on running another 10 miler tomorrow, wind-allowing, and then taper from there. I'm looking forward to the completion of Rocky Hill and then a couple of months of no racing. It'll be good to just rest without having to worry about getting ready for another long distance.
Ok, so in other news, I just found out yesterday that I got the new job that I put in for!! I am really excited about it! It'll introduce me to a whole new world of my profession. I am the new Case Manager for MICU/SICU!! My hours will be more "normal", being 8 to 5, Monday thru Friday, and I will have more flexibility as well. I will be so glad to finally get out of the ER! After almost 13 years it has really taken a toll on me. I am ready to settle in to something new and exciting! I'll keep ya posted as to how it's going. I won't start for a couple of weeks yet but I AM READY!! Peace!

Friday, April 3, 2009

4/3/2009 Gotta Run!

Man, it's been a busy week! I worked Saturday-Wednesday, all 12 hr shifts and I am beat! I was off yesterday but didn't do anything but sleep. I plan on doing a nice little interval workout on the elliptical later today and some strength training and then hopefully tomorrow morning will bring a good 10-15 miles out on 1585. I GOTTA RUN! I'm getting cabin fever big time. Rocky Hill is only 2 weeks away so I need to get in a few good runs before then.
Ok, so new subject..........I have been going through withdrawal from my La Sportiva Slingshots ever since the company discontinued them. I have been hopping from shoe to shoe trying to find something that I like just as well. When the Slingshots went the way of the dinosaur I decided that I would try to find something with more cushioning and support. I went with the Salomon Speedcross 2's and I like them but I don't LOVE them. However.....I've been really happy with the way the Salomon's fit my foot and they ARE comfortable, so I am going to give the Salomon XA Pro 3D Ultra's a try. They have been around for a long time and have lots of great reviews. They've got a nice low profile which I really like and they are a lighter shoe. Not lighter than the Speedcross but light enough. They should be here in a couple of days and I'll let ya know what I think. I wish we had a damn running store here in Lubbock!

Friday, March 27, 2009


My legs were ready to go by Monday, I was impressed! However, two toes on my left foot weren't feeling up to the challenge. ha My second and fourth toenails were really inflamed and painful. During the race, around mile 43 or so, I felt the toenail on my fourth toe lift up like the hood of a car in my shoe. I stopped, sat down in the middle of the trail, took off my shoe and nasty sock, and smashed it back down. I was able to keep running with no problem but man, have they been sore this week. As of yesterday they were finally feeling good enough to wear a shoe without pain. So my plan was to get out this morning and put in a short run, but I guess the wonderful weather of the Texas plains had other plans. It's been in the 70's and 80's this week but a cold front blew in last night and dropped the temp to 28 degrees and left a thin dusting of snow everywhere. Nuts! I did an interval workout on the elliptical yesterday and also did some strength training so I'm still on track, but I'm really itching to get out the door and put in a few miles. I'm off today but then work the next 5 nights so not much running then either. Damn!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

3/22/2009 The Grasslands Race Report

I got home around 1145 this am, tired and ready to just sit. This weekend was really great! The race, for me, was kind of weird though. I got to the Bluebonnet Resort around noon on Friday and got checked in and got my tent set up. I was really close to the bathrooms, the showers, the pool, and the hot tub. So nice! After I got set up I headed to the hotel where they were having packet pickup. Teresa McCoul, the race director from Cross Timbers, was there handing out packets. It was really good to see her again. She would be running the half marathon. Laurie Underwood was also there. It's always nice to see her, she is so sweet! Anyway, after that I had an early supper at Chili's and then headed back to the resort. I relaxed in the hot tub and enjoyed the company of some of the other campers for a bit and then I headed to bed so I could make sure to get up early. I made it to the race start around 0615 so I had plenty of time to set up. I put my drop bag pretty close to the start and then found the coffee. They had Starbuck's!! A big plus! The race this year was headed up by a new RD, Kevin Boudreaux. He really did a fantastic job!! I got to meet up with Dave Elliott before we got started as well. Very nice to finally meet him in person! We started promptly at 0700. First things first, the 50 milers had to do a simple little out and back as a "distance corrector." It was about 4.8 miles and I finished it in about 47 minutes. I felt ok but my legs were just kind of fatigued. I picked up the pace to see if I could wake them up a little but it never really happened for me. Once back at the start we took off for Loop 1, the blue loop. About 13.5 miles, this loop was pretty uneventful. Several people got off course though! The course, I thought, was well marked but you did have to pay attention in a few areas, especially on that first loop. Two of my friends got a little off course at this point, Matt Crownover and Shanna Armstrong both. ha It did not, however, impede their race. Matt would go on to drop the hammer and take second overall! Fantastic race, Matt! Shanna would end up finishing about 22 minutes ahead of me. Anyway, my legs continued to feel fatigued and just didn't want to go. At the start of the second loop, the yellow one, which was 10.4 miles, I became very apathetic about the whole thing. Very strange for me. I absolutely could NOT force myself to run much. I just felt like crap and didn't want to do anything. I can only assume that since this was my third 50 miler in the last month and a half, it had finally taken somewhat of a toll on me. I guess that's understandable! So I continued to plod along and made it back around to the main headquarters again. I fueled up with an oatmeal creme pie and a chocolate Boost and headed out again. The third loop, or white one was the longest for me! It was 12.8 miles and it just seemed to drag on and on and on. Once I was about 5 miles from making it back around to the headquarters on the white loop Matt came up on me while running the last part of his last loop. I couldn't believe how far he had moved ahead of me! I finally started getting a little spring in my step thanks to some good music on my Ipod. I never listen to the damn thing but decided to later in the day because I was still so bummed out. I made it back to the start and again drank a Boost and ate an oatmeal creme pie. The last loop, the red one, was 8.9 miles. I was actually able to run most of this loop which helped make up a little lost time. I crossed the finish line at 10:37. Not a bad time, just not the best for me. Kevin was standing at the finish line with my buckle and a firm handshake. I really enjoyed watching him in action. He seemed to take a very active role in everything and made the race his own. I was really happy with everything.
So in was a really good race. I am still a little aggravated with the amount of apathy that I had but was glad to have forced myself to get it done. The last three races that I have done have been pretty technical and have kept my mind really engaged. This race, while beautiful and diverse scenery-wise, had no technical aspect to it at all. It was flat dirt trails and some areas with fairly deep sand. Each one of the loops had something different to offer though which was pretty cool. One loop boasted scrub trees and sand, while the next offered a gorgeous wooded area with cedar trees and fine dirt, then another was through some tall, waving, grassy fields. I was really surprised at the amount of soft, deep sand out there. I did not expect that. I think overall that the lack of any technical trails was what contributed to my lack of interest. I do, however, want people to know that the race was really, really well run though. The aid stations were top notch with friendly, helpful people and...........they had BROWNIES! Always one of my favorites! Kevin Boudreaux, again, did a really fantastic job running the whole thing! Thanks again to everyone that helped out!
And a big shout out to Dave who got his first 50 mile finish! Congrats, Dave on a job well done!
Matt, congrats on second place! Way to kick some trail!!
Ok, so 26 days until Rocky Hill Ranch! 4 down, 1 to go! Peace!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

3/18/2009 Sorry, Guys......... A RANT!

It's not been too bad of a stretch at work over the last few days. It's been busy but nothing outrageous. Maybe with the warmer weather, people will actually do something with their time other than spending it in the freaking ER. After almost 13 years, it still amazes me every day what people come to the ER for. I mean, seriously, who the hell taught them to go to an ER if you have a sore throat, toothache, or you puked one time. Apparently, you're just never supposed to have to suffer in life. They want the "wonder pill" that fixes everything instantaneously. Many of the people we see are rude, crude, and hostile towards the nurses and the doctors. They check in to the ER at triage and we become "Enemy Number One." It makes no sense to me. They act like we're all stupid, nurses and doctors alike. If we're that stupid, why come to us in the first place??? If they don't get what they want or we tell them something they don't want to hear, ie "Everything looks ok on your labs" or "You just have a virus/cold", it pisses them off and they want another doctor. It's ridiculous! I mean, I DON'T CARE IF YOU READ ABOUT SOME STUPID DISEASE IN EFFING READER'S DIGEST! You DO NOT know more than we do about medicine and healthcare because you watched every episode of 20/20 with Barbara WaWa!! Obviously we see A LOT of low class, uninsured pieces of crap who think that the ER is free healthcare because due to governmental restraints we can't ask for a copay until after they are seen. We HAVE to see everything that comes in the door whether it's bull shit or not. Then once they are medically cleared, we are STILL unable to collect any money. If they would just make all non-urgent visits an automatic 35 bucks before they are treated, it would make all the difference in the world. That's what it costs to go to an Urgent Care Center! They have to pay up front at those clinics and that's why they don't go to them. It should be the same for the ER. If it's a true emergency then WELCOME! We'll settle the bill at a later time. If it's your cough/cold/puked once/my vagina hurts type of visit then pony up, brutha/sistah!! This shit ain't free!

Ok, like I said, Sorry about that! Be glad that it wasn't in all caps! Back to running! So, I've tapered down and I'm ready to run this weekend. More than anything I'm just ready to get out of town and spend some relaxing time on the trails. Peace!

Friday, March 13, 2009

3/13/2009 Shouldn't have Bragged!

Well, sometimes when we boast about things.........the opposite happens! I've been bragging about the great temperatures we've been having here lately and it's bitten me in the ass the last couple of days. It's only been in the 30-40 degree range with rain and snow mix yesterday and today. Not very good for a long run, that's for sure! Tomorrow is supposed to be in the 50's and clear so hopefully, if the wind doesn't pick up, I can get in a nice 10-15 miles before I head back to work tomorrow night. I'm off tonight and then on for 5 nights.
After that, it'll be time to head to Decatur for The Grasslands. I'm excited about this race, hoping to bring my PR down even more. If I could hit 9:30 or less I would be in hog heaven! Plus I am getting to stay at Bluebonnet, where they have the Bare As You Dare XC 5k! It's a beautiful, wooded, and serene resort with showers, two swimming pools, a sauna, and a huge hot tub. Oh, and it's au naturel! Total relaxation and comfort! Hell, yeah!

Monday, March 9, 2009

3/9/2009 Strength Training is doing it's job!

So yesterday brought a fantastic 6 miles out on 1585! It was a little gusty but my legs felt incredible! I have really been hitting the strength training and I can tell a difference big time. I just feel stronger, my legs more solid! My body is also starting to lean up which is a HUGE accomplishment for me! It seems that no matter how much I ran I always looked a little "soft" in the upper body and abs. Just a layer of fat that wouldn't go away, but with the strength training I can see it starting to come off! Very exciting! Also I've been really strict on my vegetarian diet which means I've lost about 6 lbs in the last couple of weeks. So I'm stoked! I guess if I did more speed work like wind sprints and intervals, it would make a difference too but I hate those more than strength training! ha Maybe in the future if I want to get faster. Right now I'm content to be a middle-of-the-pack'er!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

3/7/2009 The Wind is Killing Me!

Man, the wind the last couple of days has been horrendous, gusting up to 30mph at times! I got in a nice 10 miler yesterday morning before it hit, thank goodness! I felt really good afterwards and was happy to be able to get back into some longer runs. I did strength training in the afternoon, including 90 body weight squats which kind of made my legs a little jello-like today. I love that feeling though, that you've done something! I had planned on putting in a shorter run this afternoon but with the wind blowing the way it is and no shelter of trees or anything, chances are I would end up in Oz! So I talked to Aubrey and we'll probably hit the road in the morning around 8:30 or so. If you wait too long then you'll get blown cross country! Stupid plains of Texas! ha

Thursday, March 5, 2009


In the last week or so I've only put in 10 miles. ha It took a little longer to fully recover from Cross Timbers than I anticipated. Again, it was just a tough course! I'm off for the next 4 days and I should be able to put in some good miles. I had applied for a job at the hospital that I thought would be a great way to get out of the hustle and bustle of the ER so I wouldn't be so damn tired all the time but it didn't pan out. Oh, well. I'll keep my eyes and ears open for something else. Anyway, The Grasslands is about 2 weeks away and I need to be focusing on that.
Zach's baseball season has started back up too and that always keeps us busy. Kenzie is planning on playing soccer this spring and summer too so that should be interesting. Does anyone have a cloning device that I could borrow?

Saturday, February 28, 2009

2/28/2009 Back to Work

I head back to work tonight for the next 4 nights. Yuck! That damn "needing money" thing is always getting in my way! It's hard to live life when you are stuck at work all the time. ha It's not that bad in all actuality. I get the days off that I need for my races and I really do like my job, believe it or not.
So Aubrey and I got out and ran a little 4 miler yesterday just to loosen the ol' legs up a bit. I'm still a little stiff after Cross Timbers but I felt decent. I took today off except for a good strength training workout and I plan on running a little in the morning if I don't get my ass kicked tonight. There's always a chance that will happen on a Saturday night. We'll see what happens. Peace!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

2/25/2009 Ready to start Ramping.......again.

Ok, the legs are pretty much back to normal after the beating they took at Cross Timbers! I've had to work the last two nights and it was tough getting around that ER in a "timely manner," believe me! ha By the end of each night I could really tell that I had run one helluva tough course . I am off for the next 3 days so I'm anxious to actually get out and do a little bit of leisurely, relaxing, Zen running. Not worrying about anything else, just putting in some mileage and enjoying myself. That's the plan!
I got a call yesterday from Shanna and she is still wanting me to go and run the Jemez Mountain 50k with her in May. We decided last year that we would go back and attempt the shorter distance since we FUBAR'd the 50 mile so badly. I was hoping she'd forget! ha I'll let ya know how that's going to progress. Wish me luck!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

2/22/2009 Cross Timbers Race Report

The Cross Timbers Trail Run can be summed up in just a few words. Very TOUGH, very TECHNICAL, and..............wait for it............very OUCH, Baby, YEAH! I had a blast!
I got there Friday and got the tent set up despite the 20mph winds coming off the lake. The race start/finish was at the Cedar Bayou Resort and I camped just down the hill from it. I checked in and met Teresa McCoul, the race director. I found her to be an organized, high energy woman who really knows how to put on a good race! The only down part of the whole thing was the lack of porta-potties. There were "pit toilets" and that was it. I've included a couple of pics of those nasty, primitive crapholes and I think it beats Tony's "toilet on a pedestal" anyday! ha Okay, so they made a really good spaghetti and salad supper, and I drank a couple of Shiners to cap it off. I met a couple of guys that I really enjoyed talking with the whole evening as well. Michael and Stanton were their names. Michael was slated to run the 50 mile while Stanton was there for the 1/2 marathon. Stanton is training for Buffalo Springs Ironman 70.3 here in Lubbock and Michael is an experienced adventure racer and ex-Army. Ok, so I hit the hay around 10pm. Around midnight or 1 the wind HIT! It was so noisy in the tent that I was awake every 30 minutes or so. That part sucked! I went ahead and got up around 5am and started getting ready. The race also includes a 5 mile, a 1/2 marathon, and a full marathon, not to mention the 50 mile. The 50 milers started first at 6:30am. It was cold and windy from Hell at race time and would stay that way! Anytime you came close to the lake shore the wind would try to take your head off! Anyway we took off right on time and that's when the fun began!
I really didn't know what to expect from the course itself but had been told that it is the "Toughest Little Trail in Texas." I haven't run ALL the trails in Texas but I would have to agree that it is one tough, freaking trail! The trails boasts 10,900 ft of elevation gain/loss. Lots and lots and lots of climbs, and I don't just mean inclines! I mean leaning forward, hiking-type climbs up rocks and roots. I remember looking up several times after a grueling climb and having another one looming straight ahead. I also remember growling every time I saw one, especially towards the end of the day. haha I think there were more roots out there than at Rocky Raccoon and that's saying something. In some of the gullies, as you traveled downhill, you would have rocks covered with fallen leaves that you had to find and navigate. Really tough, guys!! The course is set up so you run 10 miles out and 10 miles back from one side of the start and then 2.5 miles out and 2.5 miles back from the other side. You do this twice so you know that all the hills that you just busted your ass climbing would be waiting for you to do it all over again!
I kept my fueling very even throughout the day, drinking Clip2 and using gels every couple of hours. I also tried some Sport Beans which I really enjoyed and will probably use them again. Also since it was cooler, my stomach wanted something more solid from time to time and I kind of picked at stuff at the aid stations. The aid stations were phenomenal and the volunteers more than ready for you. Fantastic job on that part! Back to the course, there is an area where you come out into the open right by the beach and have to run about 50 yards through deep sand. Gaiters would have been nice at that point but oh, well. On the other side of the lake on the 2.5 mile out and back, the vistas of the lake are spectacular! You are running right along the bluffs and cliffs of the lake! It's really special, just make sure you watch where the Hell you're going! Along this route I ran into Michael who had taken off like a shot from the very beginning! He was having some ITB issues and had decided to drop once back at the start/finish. I hated that cuz he was smoking that course!
So one weird thing for me was that my legs actually woke up and felt BETTER during the second time around. I felt like I was able to run more than I did during the first go around. Not sure why and I can't prove that in my splits since I didn't pay attention to them that much. Also, my calf never even once gave me any issues! I wore the Zensah sleeves and I really think that they made a difference. I ended up running it in like 12:13 or so. A decent time from what I heard and I think once again that it will land me pretty squarely in the middle of the pack. Results aren't posted as of yet. Even after the race my legs felt ok. I was tired for sure and was REALLY happy to get off of that course.
I had planned on drinking a couple more Shiners at supper but ate 3 veggie burgers that Teresa grilled for me and some cheese puffs instead. The burgers and cheese puffs were, I swear, made in Shangri-La! After supper I retired early. I decided to put my mattress and sleeping bag in the back of the Xterra cuz I was NOT going to deal with the wind in that tent again. I slept like a baby from 8:30pm to 3am! I woke straight up, broke camp, and hit the road. I made it home by 9:30am and was able to have breakfast with Kelli and the kids who were just getting their lazy asses out of bed. ha
Ok, so in essence, the Cross Timbers Trail Run is phenomenal and it's everything that a seasoned trail runner would expect from a course. It can and will chew you up and spit you out if you let it! Teresa did an amazing job directing it and the volunteers were all fantastic! And I so loved those veggie burgers!! And I think she is going to get us some porta-potties for next year!! Yeah!

Ok, guys, so 3 of my 5 on the Grand Slam done! Party on! Peace!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

2/18/2009 Getting packed

Alrighty then, I think I'm ready. My calf seems to be doing good. There's no pain or anything and the swelling is gone. Just in time too since I head out Friday morning to Lake Texoma for the Cross Timbers Trail Run. I've heard that the course is very Bandera-like which means tough and gritty! I'm up for it! I'm in the best shape I've been in since doing these ultras or at least I think I am! ha I feel good and that's what counts, right? I've been doing lots of strength training over the last couple of weeks to make up for no running since Rocky and it's amazing how much different you feel afterwards. The body makes changes so quickly! I hate doing it but it's what needs to be done. Anyway, I am planning for a little slower time for this race due to the terrain and the "iffy-ness" of my calf. I will be wearing Zensah sleeves just for support. Hopefully I won't look like a big ol' dork!
I, once again, plan on pitching the tent at the race start. It's so much cheaper than getting a hotel. They don't have showers there either which kind of sucks but c'est la vie. I'll just take plenty of wet wipes again. ha Ok, so I'll post a report when I get home. Wish me luck! Peace!

Friday, February 13, 2009

2/13/2009 On the Mend

Alright, it's been a few days now and I've been off of work the whole time, resting. I've kept my leg compressed and elevated and haven't done ANYTHING all week. My leg actually feels pretty decent! I'm surprised, yet happy! I can still feel where it ruptured when I stand up but it doesn't hurt like it did. I've trotted around in the house with it and strangely doesn't really even hurt when I run! Hopefully it won't develop into my Achille's Heel.........literally! I ordered some Zensah sleeves to run in for Cross Timbers and I'm hoping that will be enough support. I think it will be. I'm still flabbergasted as to why this happened. I've never had anything like this before. I do, however, plan on continuing on my merry little way to the Texas Grand Slam finish.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Rocky Raccoon Race Report or Whoo Hoo! 50 mile PR!

Zach and I hit the road about 5am and arrived at Huntsville State Park around 12:45pm or so. We got checked into the park and headed to our campsite. We shared a site with the Crownover family and had a fantastic time. Zach's one mile race was to start at 4pm so we headed over to packet pickup after we got our tent set up and squared away. We got our packets and headed over to the kids' race start where they took off and ran a half mile out and back. One kid was trained for this and he meant business. He was a tad older than Zach and man, could that kid run! He finished in 7:26 and Zach came in behind him, taking second with a time of 8:15, a one mile PR for him! Way to go, Zach!
Later that evening we met Tony, Sergio and his wife, Rick, Wayne, and Kira at Chili's for a nice, gentle supper. Just a caesar salad and potato soup for me, oh, and a big glass of Shiner Bock! Yum! We didn't stay too long and headed back to camp for an early night.
The race, as usual, started promptly at 7am. It was a new course for this year as well so it didn't feel like the same race at all. I felt really good heading out since it was nice and cool with a breeze coming off the lake from time to time. I wore shorts and a long sleeve North Face technical shirt and was fine all day, even in the heat. Once again, the course was absolutely beautiful and serene. I, myself, didn't feel like the roots were as bad this year. Others would disagree! ha Oh, well. I saw Andy Jones-Wilkins and Jamie Donaldson several times throughout the day as well. It's always really cool to be able to run on the same course with such talented individuals! Anyway, around mile 8, I felt like someone kicked me in my left calf with a pointy-toed boot! I walked for a minute trying to figure out what the hell had happened since it was still hurting like crazy. I finally decided, "Screw it!," and took off running again. After a little bit the pain disappeared completely and I ran the rest of the race in relative comfort. I guess I was just able to run through it. My left calf is bruised and swollen now but hopefully on the mend already. I still don't know what it was.
Anyway, I ran the first loop in about 2:55 and still had a lot left in the tank. My mental game was stronger this year I think and that's what made the difference for me. I didn't spend any time at all at the aid stations, just grabbing a fresh bottle of water to mix with my Clip2 and then heading out. I only used Gu this race, no solid foods, save for a few M&M's. I just wasn't hungry out there. The second loop was completely uneventful except I was able to see Zach and my other friends at some of the aid stations. Julie, Becca, and the kids were making their rounds to all the aid stations since they were crewing their husbands in the 100. Their cheering for me was always the extra energy in my step for a couple of miles after I passed them! Thank you guys so much for being there! I love you all! I believe I finished the second loop in about 3:25 or so. When I took off on the third loop, I realized that I had the opportunity to set a 50 mile PR even if I ran the last loop in 4 hours. I was stoked! Amazingly enough I was able to run most of the third loop. I made sure to walk the uphills (of which there were more this year) and then run all downhills and flats. I really felt pretty good! Anyway, I crossed the finish line in 9:50, shaving 35 minutes off of my previous 50 mile PR! After the race I headed back to camp and hit the showers. I stayed in there forever! I had to chuckle too cuz while I was in there Noah and Micah came in with their Grandad Doug for a shower because they were swinging on some poison ivy vines! haha Hopefully the shower worked and they won't be miserable! After my life-giving shower I headed back to the finish line and found Rick there waiting for Tony to come in. Rick had some pizza at his table that he offered so I swiped a slice. Thanks, Rick!! It was the first solid food I'd had all day and it was majorly yummy! Later on that evening we had taco soup at the Crownover's camper again which was just AMAZING! That stuff is like ambrosia after a long race! I headed to bed early and got up early to see some friends after they completed the 100 miler! Before I left camp I talked to Matt who had run an amazing race and finished in 21:22! He was really sore, and his foot was as red as my calf was. He had to use a makeshift cane to get around camp. I also saw Brett who had finished in just under 24 hrs. At the race finish I ran into Tony, his pacer Rick, and Sergio while they waited for Wayne. They had all come in under 24 hours, so big congrats to all those guys! I love how publicly posting your goals on your blog puts so much pressure on you! ha Great job you guys! As soon as I get some pics I will post them but for now this is all there is. Thanks to every one out there, all the volunteers, and a big thanks to Joe and Joyce for another race well run! Peace!

Addendum 7:34pm
I went to work as scheduled at 6:45pm and by the time I got there my left calf and ankle was already double in size. ha I had one of my Doctor friends check it out (in case you didn't know, I work in an ER) and he said that it looks like I ruptured the "muscle belly" of my left calf. He was concerned that I could develop rhabdomyolysis from it if I didn't drink enough water. Luckily, that's all I've done since finishing the race! I'm not worried about it at all. They had me come home tonight and marked me off the schedule for tomorrow night as well so I don't go back to work until Saturday night. I will keep my leg compressed with ice and elevate all week! I plan on running Cross Timbers in two weeks as planned but I'm not running a step until then! Wish me luck!

2/9/2009 Short Update

Ok, back from Rocky where EVERYONE I talked to had an amazing, goal-realizing race! The whole group that I knew that was doing the 100 miler came in under 24 hrs, except for Wayne, but from what I heard he still set a PR! So congrats are in order all around! Good job everyone! It was a fantastic weekend of meeting up with older friends and making some new ones! I'll post a full report in the next day or so, once I can wake up good! Oh, and I set a new PR for myself! I ran this year's Rocky in 9:50, beating my old PR by 35 minutes! Whoo hoo!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

2/4/2009 Ready to Go!

Ok, so yesterday was Makenzie's 10th birthday! Yay! She wanted to go to our favorite Mexican food place so we went to Mi Tio's! It was delicious as always! Thank God I was able to get out and run a little today since I WAY overindulged last night! Everything seems to be a go for this weekend. I am going to run out to Academy tomorrow and pick up some bottles of propane for our lantern and heater in case we need them. I also need to hit the grocery store and grab a few staples! I have to have Little Debbie Oatmeal Creme Pies and Haribo Cola Bottles or it's just not an ultra! ha I am also picking up some veggie stuff for supper with the Crownover's on Saturday night as well as breakfast on Sunday morning! I'm really looking forward to seeing all the friends again that I have met at various races as well! I'd like to wish Tony, of, the best of luck as he strives to go sub-24 in the 100 mile race! I think he'll do fantastic! He's also got one helluva pacer in Rick Gaston, who should be able to keep him moving and motivated. Also good luck to Jamie Donaldson as she runs her first 100 with Drymax as her sponsor! And to anyone else that has specific goals for this race, GOOD LUCK! Peace!

Friday, January 30, 2009

1/30/2009 New Plan..........for now.

Not much running over the last few days due to work but I got out for about 30 minutes today and put in some intervals. I don't really care for speedwork and it's never really been that important to me but I do think that it burns a lot of calories. Calories...........something I definitely need less of. I haven't started my strength training with the kettlebells yet because the money I was going to buy them with is going to all of my race entry fees. My running is much more important to me than the other. In the meantime I think I am going to do this. It's cheap and efficient. Once I get some of my races done then I can spend a little extra money on the kettlebells.
Ok, so I am going to put in a nice long run tomorrow before work and then slow it down big time for Rocky. Also I've been trying to get Zach to get out and run a little but he ain't done it yet. Oh, well, he'll just have to deal with his side stitches again! ha

Sunday, January 25, 2009

1/25/2009 "I'm Board Man!"

This weekend brought some fantastic running weather along with it! Today was amazing! I put in a little over 10 miles out on 1585 with 68 degree temps with no wind. I really feel for the people that don't get out and experience that kind of bliss. In retrospect I probably should have put in about 20 miles since it was so gorgeous! Oh, well! I felt really good after the 10 and I'll put in another long run towards the end of this week then taper for Rocky.

Ok, so I know you're wondering why I titled this entry "Board Man," so here ya go. BOARD MAN, Defender of all that is Inflexible, Stiff, and ummmm, un-yogalike! That's me! My secret identity is blown! For the love of all that is pliable, would someone help me?? haha I really need to start doing some kind of stretching routine or yoga or something! If any of you know of a good program or video for runners, please, let me in on the secret! I would greatly appreciate it! Thanks, and Peace for now!

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Alrighty then, I didn't run at all while I worked, just too busy. I did, however, get out today and run an easy 8. The weather is just downright fantastic! A slight breeze and the temp is around 75 degrees right now. Tomorrow is supposed to be even warmer! Crazy! Not supposed to be able to run shirtless in January.

So Rocky is coming up pretty quick. I am borrowing Aubrey's big tent for this run so Zach and I can be a little more comfortable. Plus we'll have running water there too which will be soooo nice compared to the wet wipe route. ha They've put in another one mile kid's run so Zach is entered in it again. He's ready to go. I'll post more about our plans as it draws nearer. Gotta put in a couple more long runs over the next week too so I need to get busy.

Friday, January 16, 2009

1/16/2009 Big Miles..........NOT!

Okay, so I ran a little 4 mile recovery run on Wednesday and then another 4 miler today. Yeah, yeah, I know, big miles!! I hopefully will be able to put in a longer run in the morning. I will get my run done early in the morning since I have to take a nap in the afternoon and work tomorrow night.

Man, I really need to get focused on my diet! I am wanting to really lean up this year but I am eating all kinds of crap lately, like craving Blizzards from DQ and that kind of stuff. That's really weird for me cuz I just don't really crave that kind of junk food. Just gotta get some more self discipline. Hopefully on this next paycheck I will be able to buy the kettlebells I want too, so that will help. Ok, so now you're updated! Have a great day! Peace!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

1/13/2009 The 50 Mile Texas Style Grand Slam

Well, it's official..........I'm a freak! I've decided to commit proverbial hari kiri and get into the mix with the 50 Mile Texas Style Grand Slam. I was flipping through races yesterday and came across this thing. It starts with the Palo Duro 50 miler which I've already completed and then the Rocky Raccoon 50 is coming up next. Two of the other races on it were also on my agenda for this year so the only thing extra I have to add is the Cross Timbers 50 miler. The tough part about that is that Cross Timbers is only 2 weeks after Rocky Raccoon!! I think it'll be an absolute rockin good time! I will have to run The Grasslands 50 in March and then the Rocky Hill Ranch 50 in April. The awards for completing the Grand Slam will be presented at Rocky Hill which is obviously the last race in the series. Pretty cool that I happened upon it and that I had already completed the first one in the series and had 3 others from it on my list to do in 2009. Fate, ya know?

Okay, so on another note, I received my new copy of Ultrarunning Magazine in the mail today. It has the story and results from the Javelina Jundred in it and I'M ON PAGE 10!! Of course, I'm in the middle of a pack of runners, but still, it's cool! My kids looked at me like I was famous! haha

Monday, January 12, 2009

1/12/2009 Bandera 50K Race Report

Zach and I had a fantastic weekend! The Hill Country State Natural Area was absolutely beautiful and robust with trees, cactus, yucca, and various wildlife. We got there around 2pm and found a good parking/camping place close to the main lodge aid station. We just slept in the back of the Xterra. At 4pm Friday afternoon we sent the kids off on the inaugural One Mile Kids Run! There were 11 participants of various ages and Zach broke the tape first! He was completely winded but stoked! They had really cool awards for the kids, kind of a pewter iguana with a plaquard saying Bandera Endurance Run 1st place! Very cool! After the race we had a delicious dinner catered by a local restaurant. Spaghetti and Tortellini plus a salad. Pretty tasty! After a brief prerace meeting Zach and I headed off to bed. We watched 10,000 BC on the portable DVD player and then crashed for the night. Around 4am a strong wind started blowing and would continue to wreak havoc all day. The temp for the day was in the 50's but felt cooler than that due to the wind. Anyway, the race started promptly at 7:30am and the 100K, 50K, and 25K runners would all head off in different directions. It was so nice to not have to fight the cattle chute. Ok, so, the first 10 miles of the 50K course were the toughest by far. There was a lot of climbing and neverending rocks. Apparently they don't believe in switchbacks down there either. If you came to a huge hill you just had to go straight up over the top and then dodge rocks on the way down the other side. At this point I was thankful for the small amount of time I devoted to getting on the elliptical at a higher setting. I got to chuckling when Chris, a 6'8" runner from San Antonio, asked me how I liked the scenery and I told him that all I could see was rocks and horse shit! You really did not want to take your eyes of the trail for a second due to all the rocks. After the first 10 miles it leveled off and most of the course was on nice soft dirt trails and some beautiful wooded paths. However, one mile from the 50K finish, Joe put in a monstrous uphill battle with loose rocks thrown in. I heard several people cursing his name. I told him such and he just said, "Good!" haha Overall an absolutely beautiful and diverse place to run in. The aid stations, as usual with Joe and Joyce's races, were well stocked and manned by fun, helpful people. They had everything you might need! I felt pretty good for the whole race, and never had any ITB issues which was amazing! Yay! I finished the race in 6:37. Not the fastest time but good enough to land me right square in the middle of the pack. I was pleased with my performance. After I finished I went back to the Xterra and had to use wet wipes for my shower. No running water at the park! That part sucked but c'est la vie. Hopefully no one saw me in the front seat. ha After I got "sparkling clean" I headed back to the Lodge aid station so I could help out for awhile with the 100K runners and so forth. Also, once again, I got to meet some amazing new friends and catch up with some older ones. I saw Chris Harrison from San Diego whom I ran with at Javelina. She was doing the 100K. Dan Brenden was there for the 100K as well. I also met Matt Crownover and his wonderful family. Apparently, Zach and Makenzie had met his kids at the Palo Duro Trail Run and become friends with them. The Crownover's and their friends, the Teaster's, invited Zach and I over to their camp site for Taco Soup after the race. It was delicious and I also got to drink a Shiner. So good after running! Matt ran the 100K and bested his PR by over 2 hours! Awesome! He felt like he really nailed his fueling that day. That makes a huge difference. I also got to meet a fellow Lubbock runner, Jeff Key. A great guy who I hope to get to know better here in Lubbock. He had some Land Shark beers and I snagged two of them off of him while we chilled out and talked. Next time I need to take a cooler of my own! ha Zach and I headed to bed around 9pm or so and I was wide awake by 3am because the air mattress we were sleeping on decided to deflate in the night and I was sleeping on the hard floor of the car. It was freezing cold and windy and I didn't want to have to get Zach out of the car and then freeze my ass off waiting for it to air up so I decided to go ahead and git on home. I got up and shoved a sleepy Zach into the front seat and we took off. ha I hated to miss the breakfast but we would have had to wait around for several more hours in the cold and I am a puss when it comes to cold. Anyway, we got home around 10am yesterday morning. I went to see Hunter, my massage therapist, yesterday afternoon and I feel pretty good today. So, all in all, I am very pleased with this race, the course, the people, and my performance! I will definitely be back next year!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

1/8/2009 Bandera 50K this weekend

Ok, so I head out for the Bandera 50K in the morning. My son, Zach, is going along with me. I think we are just going to sleep in the back of the Xterra instead of pitching a tent since I just don't feel like setting one up. ha I just got back from the store, picking up snacks for us and I have some new movies to take to play on the portable DVD. This is Zach's first time to work an aid station so he should have a lot of fun. He'll be working at the Lodge aid station while I run. I also volunteered to help out after I'm done running since there will still be lots of 100K runners on the course still. There is also a one mile kids run tomorrow afternoon so that should be a lot of fun. I'm hoping my base will carry me through this since I haven't been running a whole helluva lot lately. Work has been killer and I've been completely exhausted. The course is supposed to be tough too! Yay! ha I think we'll have a good time. I'll let ya know!

Friday, January 2, 2009

1/2/2009 My New Fat Loss Plan

Ok, so, I find it amazing that with as much time as ultrarunners spend on the road and trails training that we would have any fat at all, but some of us do. Having said that, being the age of 37, I do have some extra around my middle that I just cannot seem to get rid of! I have some friends that have been using kettlebells to their great advantage over the last year or so and I guess I am going to have to buy into it. They really work! I bought a highly suggested DVD that shows the appropriate workouts for building better muscle and burning fat! Next thing I need to do is buy some kettlebells. ha It is suggested that a typical male of decent fitness should start out with a pair of 35lb kettlebells, each of which cost around 48 bucks. Not too bad. The program is lined out so that you work a different area each day of the week starting out with 4 days a week progressing to 6 days a week. He suggests not doing any other cardio work AT ALL! Ok, he lost me there, cuz obviously I am going to be running a lot with all my races on the horizon. I do, however, think that they will complement each other nicely. I'll buy my kettlebells sometime in the next week or two and get started. Let'er rip! (Not literally, of course!)