Sunday, July 30, 2006

Mt. Hood PCT 50 mile

Last weekend was fifth race in the Oregon Trail Series. Mount Hood Pacific Crest Trail 50 miler had well over a hundred entrents. Many doing their first 50 miler on what some would consider a "fast" 50 miler. Only 5300 feet of accent and most all of that is done in the first 25 miles.

I have done this race in the past and knew there was a ton of "running" to be done here. Many of the climbs are runnable and that is what makes the course a "fast" 50.

The weather was cool at 6:30am. I was waiting for the 80 degree temps to arrive later in the day but that never materialized. Many had PR's because of this. I ran with Kyly and Clem early on. That was the best part of the day. Clem pulled off and then it was just Kyly and I. I liked it because she didn't want to stick behind any Conga line. We were running alone for quite awhile. She even noted the advantages of being a male on the trail, I had to laugh.

I had no real time asperations at the beginging. I did want to run hard from Timberline back though.

After a bit Kyly let me go. I tried to run more of the climb than last year. So, I wasn't getting passed, but I wasn't really passing anybody either. Got to Timberline in 4:50, 10 minutes faster than the year before, good right where I wanted to be. Now, it is time for negative splits.

After leaving the Timberline, low and behold there is Kyly coming in!!!! Man she was right on my tail the whole time. She must be having the best day ever!!! I could see her big smile coming in.

Well, the next 10 miles were uneventful running by myself. But after a bit I run out of an aid station with Robert, a gentlman from Spokane. He had a great gait. Better than mine. But we start running together. I could barely keep up. But after his "Coke" wore off we started chatting. This was his first 50 miler.

Well, to put it this way he was "pulling" me all the way. We ran the last 15 miles togther. Just running everything. Passing 50k'ers cheering them on, along the way.

Well, to cut this long report short and not bore you all day, finished with Robert doing all the work in 8:59 a PR for me by almost an hour! Splits, 4:50 to Timberline, Timberline to finish, 4:09. (Last year only a five minute negative split.)

Clem ended up having stomach issues but finished in good stride. He is always so strong.

Kyly came screaming in 9:29!!! Right on my tail all day! Only one minute off her PR, the Masters Record in 2001! She didn't even look at her watch all day. She was still happy, she had a great run... Yes, she did.

Well, my other thoughts for the day was how was the gang doing at White River 50 miler, the 50 mile Championship up in Washington at Crystal Mountain. All the fast men and women were there... Nikki Kimball, Annette Bednosky, Kami Semick, Meghan Arbogast, and a lady from Alaska that I have not heard of are all there.

Nikki Kimball won with Kami 2nd and Meghan 3rd! So, happy for Kami and Meghan. Looks like their training for States paid off.

Mike Wolfe won the mens. Wonder how my brother did and the whole gang from Eugene? That race had just tons of "Big Guns", it was amazing.

Well, Kyly's knee survived. She had an old "War" injury. Good thing it didn't give her any trouble.

Now for Where's Waldo 100k in three weeks. 12,000 feet of gain for the day will be had. I am doing the regular start by orders of my brother. So, the pressure is on... I have to break 16 hours. Something I have never done before. It will be a challange to say the least. Starting to get nervous already. But there are many smart runners my speed. I will hang with them just like I did at States. Hope it pays off again! Afterall, have to get the "hat". (You don't get one if you don't finish under the cutoff.)

Last year it was "Blueberry." The year before was "Tomatoe." I wonder what flavor they will have this year? Have to break "16" to find out.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Bowerman and the men of Oregon

Well, just got the book I ordered over six months ago, BOWERMAN AND THE MEN OF OREGON. (delays in printing was the reason.) I had been reading an ultra report on Kenny Moore about a race he and others did around the big island of Hawaii. I knew when I was reading the race report that when he said he had a slow 20 mile run at 6:30 pace that I must be reading about an accomplished runner. Low and behold he ran at Oregon, the same team that I used to go watch as a teenager. I have to be honest, I didn't remember him. Afterall, Pre was the name that we all remembered at that time. O.K., maybe Mac Wilkins and a few others. But Pre took the spotlight.

Kenny Moore is the author and a talented runner. He held the American record in the marathon in 1969 at 2:13:29 to later improve it in 1972 to 2:11:36. In 1972 in Munich, he placed 4th in the Olympic marathon bettering his last outing of 14th in 1968 in Mexico, City.

Kenny Moore, not only a fantastic athlete but also a writer. He is in the national track hall of fame for writing, not running. He was the lead track writer for Sports Illulstrated for almost 20 years and C0-wrote "Without Limits", the movie about the relationship between Bowerman and Pre.

Well, I just received the book from Amazon and can't wait to read it, as with my last two running books I will probably finish it in just a few days. And this is coming from a person that doesn't read. No, I am not proud of that. Just haven't ever been a reader. I am embarrassed to say I have only read three books cover to cover in my life. How did I get through school? Cliff notes probably.

So, I will be cracking the cover tonight and relive some of my early memories of growing up in Eugene watching Oregon track and two Olympic Trials as a eight and twelve year old. I remember the starting of NIKE. I remember when the first waffle soled shoes came on the market, blue they were. I remember the stands of 10,000 plus rise on the final lap and clapping in unision as Pre would let it all hang out to the finish. And I remember the absolute roar as he would cross the finish line. What great memeories.

Now I hope to relive some of those memeories in 2008 when Eugene will be hosting the Olympic Trials once again. Maybe Meghan will be there! As she is gearing up this year to qualify at the Twin Cities Marathon. After her huge base getting ready for States she will be more than ready.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Sunsweet Trail Running Festival

Well, I might have bit off more than I could chew last weekend. With only a month after States and doing SOB 50k the weekend before adding another 50 mile weekend might have been a little much.

This was the first year of the Sunsweet Trail Running Festival and looked mighty intriguing on paper. It is put on by Alan Abbs and Beverly Anderson-Abbs. Bev was currently 2nd at WS Alan was 20th. Bev is currently leading the Grand Slam followed by Alan in third.

Brother Jeff above after downhill.

The weekend would consist of Saturday's running of a five mile uphill, five mile downhill, and later that afternoon a 10 mile flattish run. Then on Sunday was to be a 50k. One could do any or all of the events. I choose the later.

Saturday was fun. A fairly good climb of 2400 ft in five miles. Followed by running down same trail for the downhill. The high school kid Ben ???? smoked everybody on the downhill, Jeff and Sean included. Lewis Taylor ran like a goat winning the uphill.

Ben (above) getting garb from Bev after slammin' the downhill.

Lewis Taylor collecting his goddies after winning the uphill. (right)

The 10 mile run was a little different. Oh, the trail was awesome running next to the McKenzie River, but the tempature was 100 degrees. That zapped me for energy the next day.

The 50k again ran next to the river for the first 5 miles. Everybody but Ben (Oakridge high school speedster, yes 4:10 1500 meter runner!) got off trail for a bit. So, we all added extra miles right off the bat. No worries, it has happened to me before and I am sure this is not the last.

Well, lots of climbing for the first 18 miles. But I was drained. I was dead last as the fast dudes were all up front. No worries, I have been good at this three times already this year.

Get to mile 12 and I see my brother waiting for his relay exchange with Craig. He ran down the road with me to the aid station and he could tell I was out of energy. Nothing going wrong, just fatigued. (Brother Jeff at top of page.) He told me to drink every three minutes on the way to the next aid station as this is what he did last year on his way to winning Javalina. I followed suit all the way to mile 18 aid station.

MILE 18 AID STATION: THERE WASN'T ONE THERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I was only 10 minutes behind Brian and they pulled the @#$$%&$ aid station!!!!! I was completly, beyond angry!!!!! I was saying more cuss words than I care to share. How could they leave a runner out here in 100 degree heat?!!!!!!! I was livid!!!!!! What to do? Well, I decided to run back the six miles to the last aid station. No water for 1:15 in 100 degree heat!!! Not the way I want to test my pysiologic capabilties. I was so mad that I actually ran back faster than my way out by 10 minutes. A good way to light a fire underneath me I figure. Don't want to do this all the time though.

Well, the guy that stranded me met me at a road crossing at the five miles back from the missing aid station. He was sorry but I have to tell you, I still wasn't happy. I did have to remember that he was volunteering his time to do this. I told him I was fine and thanked him for finding me.

Well, the rest of the race was not so dramatic. Caught up with Brian and he was tired. It was only his second ultra and his quads were gone. I just told him that we can finish this thing and I would stay with him. He told me to go on but there was no need for that on this day. So, we stayed together for the last seven miles.

Brian to right, mile six.

Well, we both got DFL. No, big deal. I was the only Master to finish all four events. And for this I got $200. I never expected that.

Sean won open, below. $200 smacks for him.

Sean to right, mile 22

Megan, above, Mile receiving garb from downhill the day before. And at mile 22 to right. $200 smacks for her.

Five out of the seven Team Sunsweet Ultrarunning team were on hand having a good time and collecting some dough along the way.

Would I do this event again. Heck yea. The trails were awesome. Tons of food after the race and we all had a great time. Yes, one mishap with me. But heck, what a great motivator to not being Dead Last!!!

The longest covered bridge in Oregon. The starting point for the 50k.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Siskiyou Out and Back (S.O.B.) 50k

Well, Mt. Shasta was hiding all day behind clouds while we ran SOB. It is faintly visable in the picture to the left if you magnify it. But that was the only negative about the whole day. Sunny, great views and great friends along the trail.

The race had it's most participants ever. Plus, many were doing their first ultra. I know of six myself. It was a warm day in the 80's. So, it affected some. I gave S-caps to two new runners and a third declined as we were near an aid station. I think they all finished which is good. Friends asked me if it was hot. "After States?", "Are you kidding, it didn't get this cool until 3am on States day." I only took one S-cap. Yes, I should have taken more but I was just having fun talking and taking pictrures.

The plan for the day was just to spend time on my feet and see if my legs could take it after coming off States three weeks ago.

Well, Kyly and I walked the start about one minute before the time to run. I then saw Brad and Mark in the middle of the pack. I haven't seen them in a long time. We started running and I really didn't want to run with them but they wanted to hear about WS. So, they told me that I am going to have to run faster. I followed suit but I told them only for a bit. I didn't want to run with you fast dudes. I gave my report play by play.

So, half the race goes by and I am still with Brad and Mark. What the heck was I doing? Well, just then Brad wasn't feeling all that hot. He slowed as Mark kept his usual steady pace. I stayed with him for a long while. He was nauseated and was trying to regroup. It was a good excuse to run slower, I liked this. I was able to talk to friends as they went by. Clem caught up with us and he scolded me for taking so many pictures of "this old man." Heck he won his age group in 5:31!!!

After taking a picture of Brad I turned around to run and tripped and fell. My normal for every race. No big deal. But upon being a stumbling idiot I smacked a rock with my ankle. Actually, quite painful. Still swollen today. It was difficult to run. It made downhill running very difficult for some reason. I will be doing a little self psyical therapy, and ice this week and hopefully be able to do all 50 miles at Sunsweet next week.

After limping with Brad for the next five miles his stomach went even further south. He told me to go ahead. I said it was o.k. I was fine with this. Afterall, I like walking. So, we walked and ran the best we could for another five miles. But even after going slowly he still wasn't feeling well. He let me go for the final nine miles or so.

I ran by myself for a long time taking more pictures. I think it was 72 for the day. Ended up with about 60 after dumping the blurry ones. The limping would come and go. But I could run the flats and ups with no problems. Just the downs were difficult for some reason. Came up on many new runners and this is where I offered encouraging words along with a good dose of S-caps.

Just enjoyed the rest of the run and day.

After finishing I could tell my legs are not fully recovered. That is o.k., I wasn't here to race anyway. But after looking at my time I was only a minute off my PR on this course. I guess I had some good training going into States?

Brad and John Bandur just before I tripped. This was probably John's 350 ultra at least!

It was just a great day to be on the trail and see friends!

Kyly finishing...

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

On Sunday Bob "the beast" Lyons invited Kyly and I for a run up to Silver Star Mountain. I usually do not use my hydration pack, only my two 24 oz. handhelds, but I knew better when setting out on a run with Bob. I would take both this day. Thank goodness, we were out a little longer than Kyly's predicted time of 4-6 hours....

No, we were out there 10 hours!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It was funny. Kyly and I knew this was going to happen. All of us just had a blast.

Bob knows the history of every trail and the story behind the naming of every mountain. The best tour guide for the gorge there is!

Mt Adams above. Mt St. Helens above and below.

Bob made Kyly do things she didn't want....

But she was happy in the end.

Above, Kyly doing her yoga in the cave.
Below, looking out of the cave through the arch. And below, Kyly wouldn't let me go any higher.
There was some running done.
The trail goes through the first arch.

As I said, was glad to have the extra fluids to start out the day. But as usual after running out of water Bob was able to guide us to refill everything. Thank you Bob.
In the Indian Pits. About to have a vision quest.

Some great vantage points!Not much running here.

Yummy Salmon Berries. Did I tell you I ran out of food also? Love an adventure with Bob.

Hidden Falls. Good, I can get more water again!

Mt Hood, can't run around it yet. Too much snow.

Kyly and Bob. Mt. Adams in background.

Mt St. Helens to left. Mt Rainer to the right.

Mt Jefferson off in the distance.

What a great day. We saw five mountains. The weekend couldn't have ended any better.