Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Weekly Summary 19-25 December

-Weekly Summary 19-25 December-

The Trans Canada Trail is Awesome!  Yes, my head is almost better.

Monday- 12.20 miles, 1:37, Boulder Creek bike path, 350ft

Tuesday AM- 11.03 miles, 1:13, 162Av Hr, 300ft 7 mile tempo on the bike path.  Felt better than I thought I would on this workout.  A little up and down for hills, some snow and ice on and off slowed things down a touch.  Splits: 6:01, 6:07, 6:09, 5:54, 5:44, 5:50, 5:45

Tuesday PM- 4.32 miles, :33, 141Av Hr

Wednesday- 12.53 miles, 1:42, 138Av Hr, 550ft, Wonderalnd fun

Thursday- 8 miles, 200ft, 1:00, DIA Termincal A run.  Ran into Brian Dumm (2010 JFK 1st) and Mtrunner2 saw me apparently.  My 3rd airport terminal run ever.  Not bad... Terminal A is the best with the sky bridge option.

Friday AM- 10.36 miles, 500ft, 138Av Hr, 8 X 600 Meter repeats with 600 meter jogs with general mobility.  Ran a under dressed cold/breezy one way speed workout run with the help of my awesome father in law Patrick.  Very scenic run along lake fronts and forest.  Happy with the splits considering the less than flat terrain and being really cold for the first few: 5:55, 5:16, 5:12, 5:21, 5:08, 5:11, 5:01, 5:08.

Friday PM- 4.96 miles, :41, 200ft, epic trails through the hemlock, maple, pine, beech, birch forest along the muskoka river.  I LOVE running the 20+ miles of trail at the door step of the Kernohan cabin along the Muskoka river in Bracebridge Ontario. 

Saturday- 30.02 miles, 4:15, 134Av Hr, 1,500ft, long run adventure!  Ran from the doorstep through the trails on the Muskoka river to the "Trans Canada Trail" system.  It was an adventure.  The Trans Canada Trail is awesome around Bracebridge.  Great forests, creeks, wildlife and solitude.  I did a sort of out and back with some mix-ups and challenges following the trail.  Last 4 miles were rough.  It was 2 degrees (Farenheight) at the start with about an hour of flashlight (yeah, no headlamp) running on trails and snow. I don't think it broke out of single digit temps for any of the 4+hrs.  My Nathan water pack worked perfect withthe tube in my coat, but I wasn't motivated to drink much.  My EFS was very cold and slow to come out of the bottle and I only had about 3ish oz, so maybe 350 calories for the run.  Awesome run. 

Sunday-12.28 miles, 1:40, 300ft, further exploration of the Trans Canada Trail into Bracebridge including running over a bridge with a 50+ft by 40 foot waterfall.  Awesome. 

Only In Canada
Synopsis-  Success with both the tempo and speed workout, good volume, nice 30 mile long run, flat (Bandera is fast and flat, plus I have done more than enough climbing the last month) for the last solid week before Bandera.  Would have squeezed in a longer run on Thursday, but with a 12"+ dump in Boulder on the day we flew, delays, the long flight, etc... 8 indoors was a blessing.    Running on the trails from the cabin in Bracebridge has been EPIC.  I need to get some better pictures though before I leave.  Pine needle soft trails with a light snow cover.... sweet.   

105.7 Miles
3,900 Feet Climbing

Friday, December 23, 2011

Nick Clark's Chunky Cheeks, Bandera, Head Wound, Sumary of Runnign

7 days after the North Face 50 mile in San Francisco, I couldn't say no to hanging out with a great group of guys and running 50K the awesome trails west of Fort Collins at Nick Clark's annual 2011 Chunky Cheeks 50K.  While the weather was perfect, cool, but not cold, sunny (of course, it's Colorado) and perfectly calm.  The only problem was the ton of snow on most all of the trail and 7,000 feet of climbing.  Nick, Bowman, Burch, Vega and I ran the whole 31 mile awesome course together.  From the start I was flat and still a little sore, at 12 I was feeling it and you can guess the rest of the story. 

Perfect day and snow on the way up Green
 I didn't drink that much water or hit the EFS at any regular interval, as I was sure I wouldn't do the whole run.  With somewhere around 10 miles to go and 4 hours of pretty stout running I had only had about 300 calories and maybe 40 oz of water.  I hit the awesome aid station provided in the parking lot and endulged in a honey milk bevarage (my first ever) and most of a delicious donut.  The 1500-1700ft climb over 7 miles was brutal and I did some power hiking.  I came close to giving an all I had/race effort push to finish this bad boy.  I gorged on the awesome food and beer as soon as I finished with Nick, Bowman and Burch in 6:17 (5:43 moving), no ultragen, streching, etc...

Crazier that running this arduous run 7 days after TNF 50, was that somehow I wasn't that sore or tired afterwards, as apparent in my running summary below. 

Saturday: 31 Miles, 5:43, 148Av Hr (pretty high), 7,000ft climbing, awesome time with great guys!

Sunday: 5.14 Miles, 128Av Hr pushing Felix in the Bob Stroller

Monday: 12.02 Miles easy on wonderland, 550ft climbing

Tuesday AM: 11.05 Miles, 6.5 Mile Tempo, 144 Av Hr, 500ft.  Felt good on this tempo running around wonderland with some snow here and there and some up and down. 6:36, 6:24, 6:02, 6:03, 5:55, 5:42 (last half mile).  Very happy with this workout after Saturday's beat down and 11 days after TNF 50. 

I love winter trails around Boulder
Tuesday PM: 4.29 Miles Easy, 34 Minutes with a mile and a half barefoot on kitts.

Wednesday: 12.08 Miles Easy on wonderland, 1:41, 550ft climbing.

Thursday AM: 11 Miles Speed Workout, 400ft, 1:27, 138Av Hr.  Had a good first speed session mostly before sunrise with some slick spots of snow on the bike path with Aaron Kennard.  Did warm up, general mobility, strides then 8 X 600 meter repeats with 600 jog between, then cooled down.  Pace for the 600s: 5:25, 5:16, 5:17, 5:09, 5:22, 5:18, 5:16, 5:25.  Happy with this one as I gave a medium hard effort. 

Thursday PM: 4.28 Miles, :33

Friday: 12.08 Miles easy on Wonderland, 1:42, 550Ft climbing.

Don't run on the sidewalk at night.... rest of the story is available in person.
Saturday: 12.29 Miles not easy run, 1:44, 300Ft climbing, 7.3 Miles pushing Felix in the Chariott.  Could not see out of my eye AT ALL on this run.  Depth preception was a big issue and I had a hard time in general.  Planned on originally doing 20, but just couldn't do it. 

Sunday: 23.21 Miles Long Run around Chatauqua, 3:50, 4,000Ft, 145Av Hr.  I could see half the time on this run, but only if I strained and thus made a pretty scary face (based on people's reaction, then Maggie's confirmation).  Ran up Flastaff, to Greenman, to Green, down Bear Canyon, South on Mesa Trail, back to Bear, all the way to Gregory, down and then over to Eben G. Fine for 4 more miles up the snowy west section of the Boulder Creek Trail and home.  Good last big climb long run before Bandera.  Snow, Slush, Mud and slow was everywhere. 

My favorite section of  trail in Chatauqua (Bear Canyon)
Very, very happy I could recover after TNF 50, then Nick's event, a busted head and pull out a 100+ mile week with two solid speed sessions and a good long (time wise) run.  Less climbing next week and the same speed sessions but in Bracebridge Ontario with the Canadian family. 

Weekly Summary-

102.3 Miles
6,850 Ft Climbing

It has been chilly in Boulder this December
 Bandera and the 100K USATF National Championships-

I am feeling great and thus decided Bandera would be well worth racing.  Great news is that A) my massage therapist, friend and running partner, Marcus Allen, will be joining we on the trip B) I have two great friends down in that area of Texas that will be joining in for the weekend of racing and fun, Mike Devloo and Mark Shwitau C) There will be great competition at this well run (Joe is an awesome RD) event, to include THE Dave Mackey, Nick Clark, Tim Olson, Dillon Bowman, Dave James and for sure others that I don't know about. 
I am ready and more than excited to be racing Bandera!


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Race Report for the December 3, 2011 North Face 50 Mile Championships, San Francisco

Copyright Brett Rivers 2011


A Jamaican Bobsled Dream

Click here for Bryon Powell's world class race coverage on Irunfar.com

After 2 weeks back home from Iraq I decided to run the TNF championships again.  A lot has changed since I ran this, my d├ębut to ultra running, race last year.  Last year I had a solid base of marathon training with about 3 weeks of specific training for hilly ultra racing before race day.  This year I came to TNF championships with a training base of running while deployed in the Iraqi desert.  My training had the mileage and enough leg turnover, but 100% of my climbing and descending (a measly max of -3% grade) training came from running on a treadmill. 
Might as well break up this long race report with some pictures from our trip to Telluride! (Bear Creek)

The hamstrings and quads were facing a bit of a “Jamaican Bobsled” dream in showing up to a climbing and descending ultra like the TNF Championships after training exclusively in the pancake flat desert.  I believed in the dream and gave my all. 

I had the proverbial pre-race challenges in the 2 weeks leading up to the race.  Felix, my son, was sick and not sleeping well, I had a fever/flu for about a day, 9 hour time change which all equated to horrible sleep.  But again, everyone seems to have “challenges” the few weeks before the race. 

I was feeling good on race day.  My massage therapist, Marcus Allen, did some great work over 3 sessions when I got home, working out some kinks in my right leg and hip.  When the gun went off, I was ready to execute my race strategy.  My race strategy, again, was to run as even and under control as possible through at least mile 30, then give everything I have left to finish strong.   My even paced strategy is bizarrely one that literally no one in the top 70 felt would be a good idea.  Looking at the results, there were only 5 guys in the top 50 (that finished) that was behind me at 8.9 miles…. and I was running splits faster than the average pace of Mike Wolfe’ winning time!  It just really surprises me that in such a long race so many (everyone?) chooses to run the first 10-25 miles so fast.  So yeah, again this year I pretty much had a peaceful first half of the race running well behind pretty much everyone, which I don’t mind at all. 
Felix's 1st Skiing Descent... on my back!

Countless times during the race I mentally paused from the race and enjoyed the scenery, smiled and even verbally wowed the beauty of Marin county and the trails I traveled.  After training in Iraq, I can say I have never enjoyed the beauty of trail running as much as I was that Saturday.  Things were clicking, I was feeling great passing runners, chatting with them for a bit, hitting my 1st Endurance EFS liquid shots every 30 minutes, downing my 20oz water about every hour.  The weather was great, nice and cool, especially after enduring 100-127F for so many days, windy at times and clear as can be. 

After being in around 60th place an hour in, but on faster than course record pace, I let the natural separation between “pretenders and contenders,” as my college coach used to say, take place and by the half point I was no further  back than 20th place.   On the climb up to the out and back and the half point, it was exciting to see and pass such amazing athletes like Hal Kroener (22nd) and Karl Meltzer (13th). 
I believe I was running just in front of Ian Sharman (11th at the finish) and Mike Foote (9th) around the half point.  In the brief interactions with Mike and Ian, I could tell that they were great guys.  Mike I spent a little more time with and can say that he is genuinely humble and plain cool, I hope to run into him in the future.    

Last year I ran down the long decent before Steep Ravine far to aggressively not wanting Mike Owen to pass me and I paid for it later in the race.  This year, with nearly NO down hill training, I was extra careful to take it easy on this stretch and with that Ian passed me before I passed him on the climb out.  I passed Tsuyoshi(6th) and Jason Wolfe (8th) somewhere  around mile 28-35.  All things were going as planned and with 20 to go I was in about 8th or so with the leaders maybe 9-11 minutes out. 

From the gun to mile 42 I held a relatively constant and even up hill and downhill pace and subsequent effort.  My goals for the race were to place in the top 5, top 3 being ultimate goal and to break 7hrs (all though the course was 1.8 miles shorter this year). 

I met up with Dave Mackey at around mile 39.  I didn’t realize it at the time, but Dave would be my saving grace to not completely falling apart at mile 43.  A few miles after meeting Dave, maybe at mile 40 or so, I passed Mike Wardian (18th) and was in 6th place cruising the flats approaching, at the time, 5th place Timothy Olson who was around 2-3 minutes ahead.  I told Dave, “I want to be top 5”.  Dave assured me that if I kept pace there would be a great shot at catching Timothy and Geoff Roes, who was just in front of Timothy and if things went real well, making that coveted top 3 (10 minutes ahead of me).
Bridal Veil Falls 

 I could see Timothy at mile 43 and Geoff shortly after that, but then the climbing wheels literally fell off.  The Jamaican slipped on the ice and crawled down the course.  I truly didn’t see it coming and all of a sudden I couldn’t run up the hills.  Dave was awesome and kept encouraging me asking me if I needed to take some gel or water or whatever.  Dave told me to keep up my cadence, told me I was getting it done, to keep running.  I was so done climbing like I have never been before in a run or race.  I power hiked, I shuffle ran, I walked hunched, up right, it didn’t matter I was loosing huge time.  At around mile 43 I had 9-10 minutes on Mike Foote (9th) and Jason Wolfe (8th), 3 minutes on Tsuyoshi (6th) and Jezz Bragg (7th), but I lost it all in about 4 miles. 
Me, Jacob and Joe Uhan

Dave had to turn around and join his family at around mile 47 just before the end of the last climb.  Had Dave not been there I am pretty sure I would have lost at least 5 more minutes.  I thank you Dave for saving my top ten finish.  I owe you.

 The last 2.5 miles were down hill and while Jason Wolfe and Mike Foote increased there lead by maybe 20 seconds (30 without a missed turn by those two), I painfully held pace on shot legs finishing 10th at 6:53:43.  I nearly passed out at the finish and certainly noticed that I was having a bit more trouble moving around than my competitors. 

Here are results.  

It was great chatting with all the amazing athletes and especially my friend Jacob Rydman who had a great race finishing 15th overall.  This year’s race had an amazing field that surpassed last year’s in my opinion.  There were around 30 sponsored “professional” level runners at the starting line.  I have never run with so many amazing athletes, it was a great privilege.     
The Schlarb Family in the Gondola 
I would love to have hung out longer, but I had a flight back at 4:45pm so that the following morning Maggie, Felix and I could head out to Telluride Colorado for an awesome vacation together. 

Yes, it was and is frustrating to loose over 10 minutes and 4 places all in about 4 miles of the last 7 of a 50 mile race, but even more frustrating was that I am confident that with just a little more “real” hill work, like a week more, I would have kept pace over those critical 4 miles and landed a 4th place finish.   But regardless, I had an awesome time racing on the beautiful trails of Marin County with spectacular international competition.  I am so glad to be home.                 

Thursday, December 1, 2011


I am home and it is wonderful to be back.

 Being with Felix and Maggie is unbelievably awesome.  I've been enjoying the family at home and not much else besides a morning run on the Boulder trails.

Flying from Iraqi to Qatar to Italy to Germany to Baltimore to Denver was challenging to say the least and I took two days totally off.  I unfortunately continue to battle to get decent sleep and had a one day 100+ degree fever.  Marcus Allen, my massage therapist, has put my muscles at ease from a long absence from his work.  I've re-united with Green, Flagstaff, Bear Canyon and Mesa nearly a half dozen times.  Besides how unbelievably amazing it feels to run on mountain trails, the quads desperately needed some last minute attention before 10,000ft of down hill racing this weekend.

I feel good now and I honestly can't wait to be on the spectacular trails around Marin County.

No matter what, I will enjoy my run Saturday.

My Two Favorite People

Monday, November 14, 2011

Weekly Summary 11/6-11/12

UH-60 Blackhawk.... my ride to Baghdad this week

Monday, Afternoon Easy Run
2.5 miles up at 7%, 2.5 miles down at -3%, 924ft of climbing. One loop outside. HR nice and low, legs were sore though.
                Total distance    11.02 Miles in 1:26:00 [7:48 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country

Tuesday, Morning Fartlek           
My GPS watch died today. The battery has been slowly dying to the point where I can get a little less than 4 hours running before it starts beeping, but today it totally died and doesn't take a charge. Bummer.

New Workout! The ultimate "everything" run.
6 miles on the treadmill with a run back and forth to my room to get my other watch. 3 miles up at 7% grade, 3 miles down at -3% grade, 1,109ft climbing. I then went outside did a half mile of general mobility drills and 3 strides. Next I did 3 minutes at around 6 min/mile pace on the dirt, 1 minute jog, 30 seconds sprint, 1:30 jog and repeat 4 times. Good workout. I was hoping to get some speed, hills AND a little tempo work, but have the workout be a medium effort day as I transition to race prep. specific running and training.
                Total distance    12.15 Miles in 1:33:00 [7:39 per mile]
                Terrain  Road
We had a gunner on each side with a 240B

Tuesday, Afternoon Easy Run   
Did 2 miles outside followed by 1 mile up at 7%, 1 mile down at -3%, 370ft climbing.  I’m getting more climbing in now. Tired.
                Total distance    4.3 Miles in 33:00 [7:40 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country
Wednesday,      Morning Easy Run           
Ran 3 miles up at 7% grade, 3 miles down at -3% grade, 1,109ft climbing. Felt ok. Ran a loop outside and was for the first time legitametly cold. My hands were read and my ears numb. Could see the mountain range to the North East crystal clear!
                Total distance    11.8 Miles in 1:30:00 [7:37 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country

Thursday, Morning          Hill Training        
 Sweat splashing dry heavin good ol' time!
I woke up less than excited to run.  I jogged a 2 mile warm up in the dark enjoying a setting full moon. Into the gym and on the treadmill I was having some serious negative thoughts about the workout today. Maybe postpone until the afternoon, just do a longer hill climb at an easy pace, etc... All of these bad thought were going through the head. 
Today's game plan was to lengthen the duration of the hill time trial to 33 to 35 minutes, increase the climbing from 1,600ft and slow the pace slightly.
I set the treadmill to "Hill" on "Level 16" vice 15 last week and the pace at 8.1MPH (7:24min/mil), 8.4MPH last week.
Right off the bat I was climbing at 8.3% grade instead of 7.3%. I was very discouraged, but just did it. My confidence finally got better as the workout got rolling. Today's hills were 9.2, 6.5, 10.1, 6.5, 11, 6.5, 12 repeating. I held pace and grew more and more confident.
There was an army female on the treadmill next to me and I was determined to at least keep the workout on track as long as she was there. My sweat was splattering everywhere and I'm sure it must have gotten on her. I have no idea why she got on the treadmill next to me. After the third 12% hill maybe 28 minutes in, I had the dry heaves/cough. I slowed down to 8 something/mile and let it pass for about 30 seconds. I was most concerned for the lady next to me and if she would freak out. She luckily didn't say anything. I continued on and finished strong for 4.54 miles in 34 minutes with 2,012 feet of climbing. YESSSS!!! I did my obligatory 2 miles down at -3% at 6:27 min/mile pace. I was feeling great on the cool down. Unlike my last training cycle, I feel good on the cool down vs. barely able to complete it. Awesome.

                Total distance    10.54 Miles in 1:21:00 [7:41 per mile]
                Terrain  Treadmill

Thursday, Afternoon Easy Run
Easy run with 1 mile up at 7%, 1 mile down at -3% for 370ft of climbing. Feeling great.
                Total distance    4.3 Miles in 32:00 [7:26 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country

Friday,  Morning Easy Run
Easy run on Veteran's Day. 3 miles up at 7% for 1,100ft of climbing, 3 miles down at -3%.
                Total distance    11.8 Miles in 1:31:00 [7:42 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country

Friday,  Afternoon Easy Run             
General Information:
 Easy afternoon run. 1 mile up at 7% on treadmill, 1 mile down at -3%. 370ft of climbing.
                Total distance    4.25 Miles in 32:00 [7:31 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country
Saturday, Afternoon Easy Run             
General Information:
 I moved to Baghdad (Sather AB) today. Totally different vibe, facilities, running, etc.... only option for running is a .8 mile loop. I can stay on the dirt most of the time on the side of the paved bike path, but certainly boring and not ideal.  Did just over 3 miles up on the treadmill at 7% for 1,240ft of climbing, but this model treadmill I got on does not have a downhill option.  My GPS is broken, so it is taking some time to adjust to reverting back to the guessing game for mileage.
                Total distance    12 Miles in 1:33:00 [7:45 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country
Sunday, Afternoon         Long Run            
Today’s long run wasn’t as enjoyable as the last few weeks. I didn't have time to do the whole run at once, so I was forced to break it up to two runs. First half I ran around the .8 mile loop and then on to the treadmill for 2,000ft of climbing. Second half I ran in the dark and did an additional 1,100ft of climbing. I felt good most of the run, but I was a zombie by the end. Sort of enjoyed the night running as it enabled me to really zone in on my body, form and cadence as there was nothing to look at really.
                Total distance    31 Miles in 3:57:00 [7:38 per mile]
                Terrain  X-Country

113 Miles
11,722 Feet of Climbing
14hr 28min of Runing

The week went just as I hoped.  Over 10,000 ft of climbing, a bit more mileage and finally a shift in focus to more race specific preperation: lots of climbing, lots of miles and a touch of pace work to keep my speed up to par.  Importantly, I am feeling good running with a slight exception for my long run due to traveling and transistioning to a new base. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Weekly Summary 10/31-11-6

Taking the 25' on Oh Be Joyful Creek, Crested Butte

Monday, Morning  Easy Run 
 First day of the new 2.5 miles up at 6.5%, 2.5 miles down at -3% followed
by one loop around base. 858ft of climbing.

  Total distance 10.77 Miles in 1:22:00 [7:36 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  136 bpm 

Tuesday, Morning  Speed Training 
2.5 miles up at 6.5%, 2.5 miles down at -3%,(858ft of climbing) followed by
a mile and a half run outside, half a mile of general mobility, then I did 8
x 210 meter/.13 mile repeats with about a 500 meter recovery jog. Splits in
mileage pace:
4:33 (partially on gravel)
4:35 (partially on gravel)
4:38 (on gravel)
Average split: 4:26

  Total distance 12.92 Miles in 1:39:00 [7:39 per mile] 
  Terrain Road
  Average HR  141 bpm 
Tuesday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
Afternoon easy run outside.

  Total distance 4.03 Miles in 30:00 [7:26 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  140 bpm 

South American Climbing

Wednesday, Afternoon  Easy Run   
  2.5 miles up at 6.5%, 858ft of climbing, 2.5 miles down at -3%, one loop

  Total distance 11.06 Miles in 1:25:00 [7:41 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  138 bpm 

Thursday, Morning  Easy Run 
  I couldn't get to sleep last night, so I slept in and snuck a quick 4 mile
run in before work.

 Total distance 4.02 Miles in 29:29 [7:20 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
Good Times

Thursday, Afternoon  Hill Training 
I DID IT!!! Warmed up 2 miles, then jumped onto the treadmill for my weekly
hill time trial, if you will. Set the treadmill to hill workout, level 15
and 8.4 mph (7:08 minute mile) for 30 minutes. The last two weeks I've had
to back down the speed and running 4.16 and 4.18 miles, this week I hammered
through, kept the pace and ran 4.20 miles with a total of approximately
1,600ft climbing (grade ranged from 5.5% up to 11.3%). The 11.3% grade is
absolutely brutal, but I did feel in the last minute I had a little bit more
to give... but working on patience.

Today was the happiest I've ever felt while running on a treadmill. My
average HR was 168 during the 30 minutes with a max HR of 183, that is
probably the highest average I have ever had since I got the watch 10 months

  Total distance 10.5 Miles in 1:22:00 [7:48 per mile] 
  Terrain Treadmill
  Average HR  168 bpm 
  MAX HR  183 bpm 
Friday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
  Easy run, 2.5 up at 6.5% grade, down for 2.5 at -3%, 858 of climbing. One
loop outside.

  Total distance 10.77 Miles in 1:19:29 [7:22 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  144 bpm 

Friday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
  Easy jog outside.

  Total distance 4.15 Miles in 32:29 [7:49 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  137 bpm 

Saturday, Morning  Easy Run 
  2.5M up at 6.5%, 2.5 miles down at -3%, 858 of climbing, one loop outside.
I recovered nicely with my heart rate nice and low at 135 compared to
yesterday's 144.

  Total distance 11.02 Miles in 1:25:00 [7:42 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  135 bpm 

Sunday Morning  Long Run 
Woke up rested and ready to go for my long run today. Started with 3 miles
climbing at 7% grade, 2.5 miles at -3%. Outside for 2 loops around base.
Today was the first day my hands were cold on a run in Iraq, I could
actually see my breath. The Ugandan guards were wearing down coats, stocking
caps, gloves, etc... They are always entertained seeing me run by nearly
naked in what they consider arctic cold winter. 3 miles more climbing at
7.5% grade, 2.5 down at -3% as I watched #1 LSU and #2 Alabama battle it
out... great game. One more loop outside, felt good, but the legs were
getting tired this week despite a sub 7 mile split on this last loop.
My HR on the first treadmill section was 136, two loops outside was 142,
second treadmill session 150 and last loop 151. 2,300ft total climbing.

  Total distance 28.17 Miles in 3:30:44 [7:28 per mile] 
    Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  142 bpm 

Weekly Summary:

107 Miles
13hrs 35min Running
8,190Ft Climbing

This week was satisfying with a good speed workout (4:26 mile pace on 8 x
210 meter), a new best on my hill time trial workout Thursday, over 8,000
hard earned feet climbing on the treadmill and my second biggest mileage
week in Iraq of 107.  Importantly, I am not a walking zombie, having any
signs of injury or getting burnt out.  I am also enjoying the cool weather
running and seeing the great sunrises and sunset while I run.  The light at
the end of this desert vacation is getting brighter and closer every day.
Next week I will continue on my path to more climbing incorporated into my
training while following the crucially important virtue of patience.  The
increase in climbing will also bring the more race specific training regime:
less speed and intensity, more climbing strength, endurance and aerobic
capacity.  This last 5 months I have usually had two significant workouts
and a long run each week, now I will start to move towards one hard effort
climbing workout and a bigger long run or even back to back long runs on the

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Weekly Summary for 10/24-10/30

Having computer issues, so I'm putting up old pics.  "Colorado Rocky Mountain High"

Week four of focused training.  Goals were to first stay patient (not up intensity or mileage too quickly and to listen to my body), maintain about the same mileage, increase weekly climbing and down-hill running and also change Tuesday’s tempo workout to a longer easy day with some speed work.      

Monday, Morning  Easy Run 
Comments 2 miles up at 5%, 525 ft of climbing, 2 miles down at -3%. One loop oustide for 5.85 miles. I took it slow on the treadmill, felt good outside, but my legs were sore from yesterday.
Total distance 10 Miles in 1:18:00 [7:48 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  132 bpm 

Tuesday, Morning  Speed Training 
Hit the treadmill for 2 miles up at 6% for 660ft of climbing and 2 mile at -3%. I was pretty tired.
Hit the dirt for a warm up and general mobility followed by 8 x 200 meter repeats at around 4:40 mile pace with a 600 meter recovery jog.
This speed workout was a little more challenging than I expected/planned on, but it did the job.
Total distance 12.05 Miles in 1:35:00 [7:53 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Difficulty Somewhat Difficult [Rating: 6]

Tuesday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
Easy run outside. 128 Av Hr
Total distance 4.07 Miles in 32:00 [7:51 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  128 bpm 

Wednesday, Afternoon  Normal Run 
Couldn't sleep well, got out of bed early (3:30) to possibly take advantage of "unbelievable" deal on a camper for next year’s North American mountain tour. Ended up being a total scam. Slept in and crammed my run at lunch. Feeling OK.
Total distance 10.02 Miles in 1:15:00 [7:29 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  142 bpm 
The day and place I decided I wanted to marry Maggie

Thursday, Morning  Hill Training 
After my warm up outside in the dark, I was on the treadmill for my hard effort hill workout.
Today my goal was to set a new best on my 30 minute level 15 session. Week 1 I went 4.16 miles (slightly less climbing), and 4.11 miles last week.
Total climbing is about 1,600ft and my pace is around 8.3 MPH/7:15 minute miles.
I started the workout running 8.4 MPH. Running low 7 pace at 7%+ grade is exciting. I held the pace until my second of the steeps intervals clocking in at 11.3%. I went pretty much max effort trying to keep pace and had to slow down to 8.3MPH for the last 4 minutes. I did manage to set a new record of 4.18 miles today!
I did the standard 2 miles at around 6:30 minute mile pace at -3% afterwards. Av HR for the 6.18 mile workout was 164, max 180!!
I was dragging all morning after this workout.
Total distance 10.31 Miles in 1:17:00 [7:28 per mile] 
Terrain Treadmill
Difficulty Hard [Rating: 9]
Average HR  164 bpm 

Thursday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
Couldn't go back to the treadmill, had a nice run outside. I felt way better than I thought I would despite the slow pace.
Total distance 4.04 Miles in 31:00 [7:40 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country

Friday, Morning  Easy Run 
Easy run 2M up at 6% for 660ft climbing, 2M down at -3% followed by a 5.63 mile loop around the base. 132 Av Hr
Total distance 9.74 Miles in 1:16:00 [7:48 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  132 bpm 

Friday, Afternoon  Easy Run
Comments Rushed this second run after cramming lunch down in 25 minutes, so I could enjoy a few hours relaxing this afternoon.
Total distance 4.03 Miles in 31:00 [7:41 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  137 bpm 

Saturday, Morning  Easy Run 
2 miles up at 6%, 2 miles down at -3%. One loop around base. Wasn't digging the treadmill, but enjoyed the nice cool loop around base.
660ft climbing.
Total distance 10 Miles in 1:17:00 [7:42 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  133 bpm 

Sunday, Morning  Long Run 
Slept well and woke up ready to run. Jogged over to the gym for 3.5 miles of climbing at 7.5% grade, then 2.3 miles at -3% grade. I ran 2 loops around the base in the dirt feeling better than ever with a few miles at sub 7:00 mile pace. Inside again for 2 miles up at 7.5%, down 1 at -3% then one more loop, feeling great and hitiing sub 7:00 mile pace around the base to finish the 27 mile long run. 2178ft total climbing with a 147 Av Hr.  I drank 60oz of EFS mixed water containing around 500 calories. This was the best I've felt on a long run yet. Could have certailny ran this pace with another 2k of climbing for another 23 miles.

Total distance 27.04 Miles in 3:20:00 [7:23 per mile] 
Terrain X-Country
Average HR  147 bpm 
South Platte River, Bailey to Pine with Bones


Awesome, awesome week.  Tuesday was more than I expected with the 200 repeats and Thursday was down-right brutal, but I ended up bouncing back for the best long run since I’ve been in Iraq (I know, last week I said this too).  With the exception to the last two, I’ve always been spent at the end of my long runs, that includes last year and with marathon training.  I like feeling OK at the end of the long run.  
I logged almost 7K of climbing and broke into the hundred mile range WITHOUT running myself down and keeping the make-up of the week where I want it.  I am a little nervous on how I should approach the next two months.  Not sure if I should take an easier week this or next week, or just keep on trucking and pay attention to how I feel.  I am in the best Ultra shape that I’ve ever been in and I’ve managed to keep injury free (flat desert and the treadmill vs steep mountain running) since late spring.  Very excited to put the body to the test at a race this winter…. 

101 Miles
6,948 Feet Climbing
12 Hours and 52 Minutes of Running

Monday, October 24, 2011

Weekly Summary 10/17-10/23

A week of great highs and challenging lows. 

Monday, Morning  Easy Run  
 Easy run. I was a bit flat from the long run, but nothing in particular was
really sore. Felt OK, but the last 2 or 3 miles I was pretty tired.
  Total distance 9.02 Miles in 1:13:00 [8:05 per mile] 

Tuesday, Morning  Tempo 
2 mile warm up, 8 mile tempo all on the dirt/sand. There was a little wind
and the footing was less than ideal. Never pushed the pace, just a cruise.

Total distance 12.18 Miles in 1:26:00 [7:03 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  151 bpm 
Tuesday, Afternoon  Easy Run  
2 miles up 2 miles down 660ft of climbing.
 Total distance 4 Miles in 29:00 [7:15 per mile] 
    Terrain Treadmill
  Average HR  136 bpm 
Wednesday, Morning  Easy Run 
Last run before the walls close in on my running world. Sad.
  Total distance 10.1 Miles in 1:19:00 [7:49 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  135 bpm 

Thursday, Morning  Hill Training 
Warmed up, did some general mobility and strides, then hit the gym for my
second treadmill hill workout. Started on level 14 then realized the
treadmill I was using had a different level 14 than the other treadmill I
used last week. I bumped up to level 15 and ran the 30 minute workout at
about 8,3-8.4 MPH (7:10 min/miles). Total climbing was 1,600ft, at 7:10
pace, for 30 minutes over 4.11 miles at a AV HR of 158 (including the down
hill 2 miles).
I did 2 miles at -3% at 6:20/mile pace and then a 2 mile cool down outside.

This was almost the exact same workout as last week, but this week I felt
much better during and after.

  Total distance 10.48 Miles in 1:19:00 [7:32 per mile] 
    Terrain Treadmill
  Average HR  158 bpm 

Thursday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
  2 miles up, 2 miles down (6% and -3%). 660 Ft of climbing131 Av Hr. Felt
much better than last week.

  Total distance 4 Miles in 29:00 [7:15 per mile] 
  Terrain Treadmill
  Average HR  131 bpm 

Friday, Morning  Easy Run 
Watched my roommate and friends leave on a C-17 yesterday and the walls on
the new scaled down base close up for good. Sad, depressing, etc... rough
evening, enough said.
I accidently didn't turn on my alarm, but woke up in time to still get my
run in. Today was the slightly cold feeling run with temps around the mid
50s. Feeling down without my friends and having to run in a smaller space.
Good news is that I'm feeling good where after the same workouts last week,
I was dragging. 138 Av Hr.

  Total distance 9.01 Miles in 1:09:00 [7:39 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  138 bpm 

Saturday,  Morning  Easy Run 
Today I started what I plan on doing most mornings in the future, jog over
to the gym for 2 miles climbing (6.5%/686 feet) 2 miles down hill (-3%)
followed by about 6 miles around the base. Av Hr 139

  Total distance 10.02 Miles in 1:15:00 [7:29 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  139 bpm 

Saturday, Afternoon  Easy Run 
Easy run outsdie. 132 Av Hr. Felt tired before the run, better after.

  Total distance 4 Miles in 31:00 [7:45 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR 132

Sunday, Morning  Long Run 
Started the long run with 4.5 miles up at 7% grade for 1,663 ft of climbing
followed by 3.5 miles of -3% grade. I then headed outside to to do 3 loops
of about 5.7 miles. THe weather was perfect, sunny and cool. I wore my fleet
feet visor, white compression sleeves, NB running shorts and my AF PT shirt.
I drank about a liter of water while on the treadmill along wit close to 3
oz (300 calories) of berry EFS. Outside I drank 20oz (200 calories) of EFS
Grape in my hand water bottle.
Things felt good today, I took it easy on the treadmill and followed suit on
my 3 outdoor loops in the dirt. I enjoyed a little company/hellos from the
KBR construction guys and Ugandans manning the guard towers and ECP.
Greatest thing about this run was that I was totally relaxed, comfortable
and finished feeling better than any other long run I've done in Iraq all
while running faster than I have on any long run. Av Hr was 140.

  Total distance 25.88 Miles in 3:07:00 [7:13 per mile] 
  Terrain X-Country
  Average HR  140 bpm 


This week was very fulfilling for me running.  I am more positive, happy and
excited to be running than I have been in over 2 months.  While the week
began slow, being tired from last Sunday's long run it ended with some great
gains.  Thursday's hill workout felt much better than last week, I recovered
well and had one of my best long runs since being in Iraq.
  My world, Speicher (the base I'm at), completed transitioning down to a an
OSC-I Department of State ran site Thursday.  Pretty much all of my good
friends, to include my roommate, flew out homebound.  Basically the AF and
Army is gone with a very small contingency staying.  Change is difficult and
this was a tough one.  Maggie, Felix and my running really helped me through
that first day.  I had some important small victories Friday and Saturday by
acquiring some cool furnishings from those who had departed.  I have a
groozy hippy vine sort of doorway handing over my door, I now have my own
room, I've been biking on my mountain bike everywhere I have to go, I did
some re-organization and lastly I found a guitar.  I can play 3 chords where
last week I could play zero. 
Next week I am going to drop the tempo and replace it with some speed work
and continue to increase the climbing and descending.  

Weekly Summary:
98.7 Miles
5,239 Ft Climbing
12hrs 17min of running