General running information and thoughts from a guy who has gone around the track too many times.

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On May 30th, Clark Gilbert started on a running journey that would change his life. Leaving Vernal, Utah at 6:00 am, Clark ran 167 miles, along highway 45, to Steamboat Springs, Colorado – all in 7 days. His journey was a part of the MS Run the US Relay which began on April 12 in Los Angeles, California and will finish on September 6 in New York City, New York. The Relay’s purpose is to raise awareness and money to better understand multiple sclerosis and to find a cure. The Relay includes 16 runners who ran a marathon each day of their segment.

Just finished running my 167 miles.

Just finished running my 167 miles.

Clark is at it again. On August 31 he will leave Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania and run to Fort Lee, New Jersey. Stopping at the shore of the Hudson River, overlooking New York City, on September 4. His total mileage, after 5 days of running, will be close to 150 miles. This will be the last long segment of the Relay before the grand finale, where Ashley Kumlien (MS Run the US Relay organizer) runs while pushing her MS stricken mother, and joined by other relay runners, up and over the Hudson River into downtown New York City.

Clark is doing this to support conquering a disease that affects many people in San Juan County, as well as throughout the Pacific Northwest. “I am running to serve others” said Clark. “There are too many who can’t walk through their homes without some type of aid. These are who I think about when I feel like I can’t run another step.”

Visit www.runhappyrunhard.com for up-to-date information on Clark’s second run as well as his writings from his first adventure.

To donate to help develop an understanding and find a cure for MS, please visit http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/msruntheus/clarkgilbert.

 


This week we are going to look at jogging; what it is and what it is not. The story goes that famed running coach from New Zealand, Arthur Lydiard, made popular the term “jogging”. What Lydiard was doing was promoting a slower than normal running pace that also allowed for socializing. Instead of running mile repeats or intervals, Lydiard encouraged runners to head out onto the roads and run slower. Take it easy. Enjoy the sights. Discuss things. Solve the world problems or debate why liquid soap was invented. Jogging provided these types of experiences; cause discussing the latest Bruce Willis movie during mile repeats is not going to happen.Trust me on that.

US running coach Bill Bowerman brought Lydiard’s thinking to the US in 1966 by publishing the book “Jogging”. I own a copy of said book.

I hate to say it but some faster runners didn’t like the hordes of new and slower runners who were coming on the scene back in the 1970′s. Jamming up the lanes on the track forcing faster runners to the outside. Getting attention cause how they looked, which was more relaxed with nice hairdos. These slower newbies were calling themselves “runners”. Many faster runners, when running slower, were talking smack about all the new joggers on the scene. Newbies were more interested in weight loss/control and health benefits that running can produce than how fast they ran that last mile in. They couldn’t really care less if they were on the path for Olympic gold or not. They met as groups and ran around parks, neighborhoods and city streets. They began to popularize running as a social outlet. Joggers also showed that running could be really fun. Oh my.

Unfortunately the “running” group look down at the “jogging” group as a lesser group. Some runners would cringe if they were ever called a jogger and would quickly correct the term. I have had people introduce themselves to me and then say something like “I’m just a jogger. Not a runner like you.” As though their activity needed validation.

Does it really matter if a person is a runner or a jogger? Do we really need to have a “better than thou” stand for an act that comes to us from our genetic code? I don’t think so.I think we are all runners and joggers. They are one in the same.


I have had this idea for awhile to have a running term of the week. My friend and running buddy, Stan The Wine Man, has a wine term of the day, that he posts on www.blucid.com. By reading his definitions you can really develop an understanding of wine. One thing I do know is that Stan The Wine Man knows his wine.

I know running. Been running for, well, let’s say a while. I have ran on both road and trails, plus many loops around the track. I have also ran every race distance up to 50 miles. I coached others as well. My life’s passion is running. Pure and simple.

In honor of my love and knowledge I bring to you “Running Term of the Week”. Ta-da!

This week our term will be “Running”.

My definition of running is pretty simple – its the motion produced by the rapid movement of the feet. Not to be confused with the Fox Trot or the East Coast Swing, where rapid feet movement is a requirement. In order to really run one does need feet. Most mammals and lizards qualify. Slugs do not. Birds and frogs may hop. Snakes, well they slither.

Rapid movement of one’s feet is purely speculative and personal. Some people, like my old, dear friend Steve. Steve considered himself a runner even though he was slow, by his own omission, as sin. He, in my mind, was more of a plodder. After running with Steve a few times I realized that speed had no bearing on the question if someone is really a runner or not. Like I said it’s personal. Steve considered himself a runner. I was always honored to run with him. Slow speeds and all. Steve is now dead. Lost the battle with prostate cancer.Long may you run, Steve. Long may you run.

It’s like the old saying “as you think you shall become” or as the Bible says, “ For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he.” If you (man or woman) think you are a runner and are spending time every day running, then you are a runner. No mater how fast or how slow. One foot in front of the of the other in rapid motion is running. Pure and simple.

Large creatures lurk in strange places. One needs to be prepared.

People tell me that they could never be a runner. I tell them if they had something very big chasing them they would become a runner pretty quick. They agree. Granted, they would still be lunch or dinner depending on the time of day they were being chased. They would at least be giving running the good ole college try. For a block or two.

Next week we will explore the difference between running and jogging.


Brooks Partners with MapMyFitness to Inspire, Educate and Connect Runners

 

Seattle – July 16, 2013 –   For many, running is about more than just numbers or routes. It’s also about community and connection. Today, Brooks Running Company gives those runners a virtual gathering place: The Run Happy Group, where runners nationwide can find inspiration, education and connection. The digital community lives on MapMyFitness properties, including MapMyRun and MapMyFitness.

 The Run Happy Group comes out of a one-of-a-kind partnership between leading running brand Brooks Running Company and innovative social fitness company MapMyFitness and their MapMyRun app. The Run Happy Group is the first fully integrated program between a major consumer sportswear company and MapMyFitness.

Exclusive to the partnership is a “Rate My Run” Brooks-sponsored feature that allows everyone who logs a run through MapMyFitness properties to share (and rate) their experience with options like Crushed Goals, Kicked Butt and Finished with a Smile. The rating system encourages runners to express their fitness progress through multiple social channels, building up the community that the Run Happy group promotes.

 “Runners tell us that, after health and fitness, the No. 1 reason they run – and the most common reason they continue to run – is for fun and enjoyment,” said Heather Snavely, Senior Director, Global Brand. “We created the Run Happy Group to give runners a place to share those fun experiences and to be a source of inspiration for each other. As the leading online community of runners, MapMyFitness was the perfect partner to bring this community to life.”

 MapMyRun’s current features allow users to easily track, analyze and share running routes, distance, time, pace, calories burned and much more. Brooks’ Run Happy Group adds exclusive new features designed just for runners to the desktop experience. These features include expertise on running and racing, inspirational and motivational content from Brooks and partners, a Run Happy Instagram feed and the ability to “Rate My Run.”

 Local groups are another integral part of the Run Happy Group. After joining the nationwide group, runners can sync up with a local group managed by an in-town specialty running store where they’ll discover new routes in their neighborhood, details on local events and runs, store discounts and more. Launching with more than 300 retailers across the country, local groups allow members to run with more than just their phones, they allow them to find and run with friends.

 MapMyRun is available for iOS, Android and Blackberry users. Runners can join the Run Happy Group by following the “Rate My Run” prompts after completing a run on the app or by visitingwww.mapmyrun.com/runhappy.  

 

 


Just finished running my 167 miles.

Just finished running my 166 miles.

It has been close to a month since I finished my 166 mile segment for MS Run the US Relay. I have spent the past few weeks thinking and reflecting on my experience. I wanted to be really clear with myself before I wrote this summary. To say the least this experience was nothing but awesome.

My last day running for the Relay was a somber day. Rain fell the night before. The west wind was blowing in a storm towards the mountains I was running to. Unlike the six prior days, this day would not be chilly in the morning and hot as the sun rose, but just plain cold. I was to run 26.2, a full marathon. I was totally ready to go. After six days of averaging over 25 miles, another 26.2 miles would be nothing. By the time I finished the distance, due to logistics of finish line preparations, I ended up running 24.2 miles. I was a tad disappointed with the shortness, but seeing my sister Merit at the finish line made-up for any disappointment. Merit drove over from Cheyenne, Wyoming and brought Bill Sinack, the runner who would replace me, with her from Denver. Bill would go on to run 200 miles in 9 days. Bill did a great job. Also at the finish line was Ashley, Relay director and Lucas, our local running host. Thank you all.

As I mentioned my day was somber. I really didn’t want to stop. I would have kept running all the way to New York if I could. The cold storm clouds blowing in added to the sadness I was feeling. Good bye sunshine. Leaving the Relay was a total bummer for me. I was having so much fun – much like a summer camp for crazy adult runners. I missed Shelly. I missed Ammon and his family. I missed my friends. I missed so many aspects of my life, but found such a quiet that my soul really started craving more quiet. My sister, Carla, asked me what I like most about running for 7 days. I needed to think for a moment and then I replied “the quiet of the open road”. Just being on the road, running. Putting one foot in front of the other. That’s all I had to do. My mind thought about so many things and then the quiet seeped in. I began to think of nothing. This was such a cool experience, an experience that I have found to be most hard in explaining. I think this is what meditation is design to do, quiet the mind. I experienced an intense feeling of mental peace. This was what running this long road gave me – a sense of peace.

As I reflect back on my week of running for the Relay I have a huge sense of gratitude. No just for running. For Shelly who re-designed how we ate so I would have the daily energy to run as many training miles as I did, which allowed me to kick some butt. From the very beginning of this project, Shelly’s support was strong and much needed. Thank you Shelly. I have also have much gratitude for Ashley Kumlein, Relay Director and Aaron for their “handling” of me on the road. Their good cheer and dedication to my success help make this experience most special. Thank you Ashley and Mr. Aaron. You made me feel like a Rock Star.

There are sixteen of us running in this Relay from Los Angeles to New York City. These are amazing people who have gone to the road to log  their miles for the cause of understanding and finding a cure for MS. I respect all of them. I am grateful for their dedication, not just to running the Relay, but finding a cure. All of their kind words and helpful tips were appreciated.

Finally, I appreciate all of those friends and family who gave to this cause of finding a cure for MS. I appreciate the trust that they had in me to go and run. Thank you for your support.

So many people have been asking me “what’s next.” Don’t really know. I do know that I am getting out the door and logging my miles; partly to keep my fitness up and partly to find that peace.

Stay tuned.


Wow! After a thousand plus miles of running and countless number of calories eaten and burned I am nearing my time to run for the MS Run the US Relay. In 10 days I will start running from Vernal, Utah to Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Some 170 miles. Give or take. May it be the take. I have 7 days to run all this which is very close to running a marathon (26.2 miles) per day for those 7 days. All my training and preparation is coming down to the wire. This is when I put everything on the line and experience what I think will be an epic experience. At least I hope it is an epic experience and not something I put on my “Seemed Like A Good Idea” list. It’s a long list too.

This training journey of mine has been very positive for me. My running has been nothing but pure joy. No aches or pains to speak of. Oh, I had some adjustments to make, but for the most part, everything is going smoothly. Training for the Relay has also given me the opportunity to spend quality time with my running friends. Thank you Susan, Stan, Brendan, Paul, Randy and Brian for your help and support. Shelly, my wife, redesigned our eating to ensure that I had the energy needed to log weekly miles of over 60, 70 and 80 miles per week. Thank you Shelly. Besides eating good food to fuel to my body, I have also dropped over 45 pounds. Thank you J.J. Virgin and a whole lot of running. This whole experience has left me feeling great, much like I did when I was in my 20′s.

With 10 days to go my thoughts move from running to packing to, well, so many things that I need to do. Lists to make. All things to keep me moving forward.

As far as my running for this week is concerned I have 2 goals. (1) to run, but to run with the intention of recovery and relaxation. (2) Not to injure or hurt myself. Just last week while running trails with friends I let myself go and started pushing my pace. Flying over roots, rocks and stumps. Then I realized that I couldn’t afford to trip and hurt myself. I have been cautiously running since.

10 days to go and tomorrow will be 9. Time moves forward and so must I. Stay tuned.

Clark

PS Thursday night is Wine Tasting for MS at 5.

PSS to donate to the cause of finding a cure for MS, visit here.


First of all, I would like to thank all of you who have given to the cause of MS research and education a very BIG THANK YOU for your donations. I do appreciate it.

What a week this has been in the world of running and life here in our country. The bombs at the Boston Marathon were so shocking to me. I was shocked to tears. My heart goes out to all those and their families who have been directly affected by such violence. To add to that, West, Texas is dealing with their own sadness and disbief from the explosion that rocked their town. My heart goes out to them as well.
Here on San Juan Island live has been quiet. Seems all I do is to run, go to work and run some more. Shelly is most wonderful in her support and ensuring that I am getting my nutritional needs met.
The past two weeks I have logged over 80 per week. 87 last with week, which was done with help of a 35 mile run last Sunday. My training partner, Susan, and I logged the distance in 7 hours. Thank you Susan for your help and support on these extra long distances. Today Susan, Brendan and I ran a good solid 20 miles what gave me 81 weekly miles. Nice to have some sunshine in the process. Nice to have nice running buddies as well.
Yesterday I had a brief panic attack as I was counting the weeks until I start my Relay segment. Basically I have 4.5 weeks until I start my 163 miles journey in Vernal, Utah. Wow, that’s not all that far off. This coming week my mileage will move up over 100. I plan on running 100 plus miles every week until I reach Vernal. I am very happy with how my training has gone thus far. The next 4 weeks of running should be the icing on the cake, so to speak.
Next Sunday, April 28, Susan and I will be running the Mt. Si 50 Miler. This will be good training as well. Any time running is going to be very beneficial for me.
Want to look at a map that explains my route from Vernal, Utah to Steamboat Springs, Colorado, take a peak here.
Well, that’s about it. Stay tuned to more fun and games.
Clark
ps If you are wondering what in the world I am doing, please see below.

Image

Clark Gilbert 

Segment 6 

 Some of you might have seen on my web site (www.runhappyrunhard.com) or on the various social media networks that I have taken on a new challenge in 2013.  I have joined forces with MS Run the US to raise awareness and funds to END MS.  Read about it here ===>  http://www.msruntheus.com/clarkgilbert/

 On May 24, 2013 I will be running the first of my seventh back-to-back marathons starting in Vernal, UT and concluding in Steam Boat Springs, CO on the  May 30th.

 Crazy right?

 I know.

 It’s definitely not for everyone, however, I feel extremely fortunate that I am in excellent health (all though some might wonder about my mental health) and I am running both long and hard to prepare myself for this epic adventure while representing an incredible charity.

 Along with my pledge to run 7 marathons I have taken on the challenge of fundraising a minimum of $10,000.   (This is where I need your help).

 I am asking all of you for the following help:

  1. Make a Donation Today: http://www.msruntheus.com/clarkgilbert/ any amount can and will help because 100% of your donation goes to MS Research and Education.  Checks can be sent to P.O. Box 3198, FH, WA 98250.
  2. Share this E-mail: please send this e-mail on to as many of your friends + family as possible.  The broader net we can cast the more people we can reach and the stronger we can grow.
  3. Post on Facebook: “I just donated to, Clark Gilbert, MS Run the US 2013 Relay Runner. Learn more here ===> http://www.msruntheus.com/clarkgilbert/“.  Copy and paste the sentence before into your status update to help spread the word!
  1. Lend Me Your Network: $10,000 is a large amount of money and I am not expecting my small group of friends and family to donate all of that cash.  I am hoping that we can all look inside our hearts, find the one thing we all have in common, compassion. I appeal to all of you to share with me anyone or any company that might be interested in becoming involved with my crazy adventure and MS Run the US.

I am very excited about this new adventure and working with MS Run the US. I can’t wait to share it with all of you as I share my experiences leading up, during and after my run.  Any help you can provide to myself and MS Run the US is greatly appreciated. Check out my journey at www.runhappyrunhard.com or www.seattlepirun.com.


What a week this has been and it’s only Thursday.

Sadness still lingers in my heart over the Boston Marathon Bombing. When I first learned of the bombing I was shocked to tears. This running was the 20th anniversary of my Boston Marathon Experience. Twenty years ago that Boston Marathon had bombs on their minds as the World Trade Center had been bombed a few months earlier  on February 26. The last few blocks of the Marathon course had been boarded up to keep spectators away from the finish line.

My thoughts and good wishes go out to the victims and their families.

Wearing my 1993 Boston Marathon Shirt

Wearing my 1993 Boston Marathon Shirt

This past Sunday Susan and I ran 35 miles in preparation for the Mt. Si 50 miler which is on April 28. Leaving at 5:40 am the air was chilly, but the sky looked promising for sunshine. We ended up running 35 miles in 7:01 with a max elevation of 6,724 feet. I forgot how hilly this island is.

Monday night was Monday Night Trail Running out at American Camp. Susan, Brendan and I ran our 10 mile loop at a pretty good clip – the fastest for me this year. It was a great run in spite of my tripping and falling. I have a couple of scrapes on my knee, elbow and hand. Makes for good stories.

Tuesday was a double day workout. Lunch time I ran 6 mile in 56:56, which I am really proud of. After work I ran the Egg Lake Loop which is 12 miles. My time was 2:04. Both runs had sunshine! Felt so good having the warmth of the sun on my face and back.

The last three days I have run 63 miles, an average of 21 miles per day. This is close to what I will need to run when I am running my MSRuntheUS Relay segment, where I will need to average 23 miles a day for 7 days.

My training is paying off for me. The best thing is that I feel so good. Great even. Amazing what this 59 year old body can do.

Clark


What a great day of running I had yesterday (Thursday, April 11); which was a twice-a-day workout. Morning was cold, I mean I don’t think my gloved fingers ever did warm up. 7 easy miles which took me up and around the airport, out through Fox Hall then a short out and back towards Shipyard cove. Lunch time the sun had come out and I was itching to bag another 6 miles. Warmer temperatures made this run fun and quick. 6 miles for a total of 13 miles total. I am very happy about that.

Friday is planned as an easy day, probably another 6. The sun will probably won’t be my companion. (I am crossing my fingers that the sun beats back the clouds).

Saturday or Sunday will be my extra long run. 32 miles is the plan. I will bring my running pack with water and goodies to eat. Lately I have been experimenting with Saquito energy mix. This long run will be the first time I will have Saquito to munch on. I’ll let you know how they work for me.

If I run on Saturday, then Sunday will be my rest day. Or reversed.

I am doing all this training to prepare myself for the MS Run the US Relay segment, which I start on May 24. I sill have miles to go.

Good running to you!

Clark

 


Since the first of the year I have been training to participate in the MS Run the US Relay. This relay starts in a few weeks and travels from Los Angeles to New York City. Runners like myself run various segments along the coast to coast course. My segment starts on May 24 and ends on May 30. In those seven days I will run from Vernal, Utah to Steamboat Springs, Colorado. A total of 163 miles. That’s twenty-three miles per day for seven days.
The goal of MS Run the US Relay is to raise funds for building awareness and research for multiple sclerosis. This disease has stricken so many of our friends and neighbors. To do my part in fighting MS I have set a goal to raise $10,000 by the end of the Relay in September. Running 163 miles in 7 days and raising $10,000 seems like a huge undertaking. It’s an undertaking that I know I can accomplish with your help. I’ll do the running, but I need you to donate.
Please know that your donation does not support any aspect of my run or the running of the Relay. Your donation goes directly to research and educational programs through the National MS Society.
Please take a moment to visit my fund raising page and donate $200.00 or $100.00. Any help given will be appreciated  If you like, please mail me a check, made out to MS Run the US, at P.O. Box 3198, Friday Harbor, WA, 98250.
With your help we can help others who are battling this dreadful disease. You and I can make a huge difference. Please donate!
Over the next 7 weeks I will be posting weekly updates as to how my training is going. This year alone I have run 600 miles!
Take care!
Clark
For more information on the Relay please visit:  MS Run the US.


Last week, which ended on Sunday March 31, was a positive week for me. Here are my stats:

Weekly Miles: 68

Time Ran: 13:57

Calories Burned while running: 14,136

Longest Run: 30 miles

I changed my training this week to a more traditional short/long method. I run a short or recovery run of six miles on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. On Tuesday and Thursday I ran longer for 12 miles. On Saturday I ran the Gorge Waterfall 50K, which was a tad short. I figured I still ran around 30 miles.

This type of training is similar to my approach to how I plan to run 163 miles in 7 days, the length of my MS Run the US Relaysegment. My plan is to run 30 miles (spilt into two runs) on the odd days and 17 miles on the even days an average of 23 daily miles over 7 days. I am hoping that the shorter days will provide me with adequate recovery.

This past week of running short/long days was a good thing. The shorter, recovery days provided relief of both body and spirit, which is really important. If my spirits aren’t up, then it’s harder to get out the door.

Highlights.

  • Finished the Gorge Waterfall 50K. My goal was to finish in the 6 to 7 hour range, but missed by 25 minutes. Still, the experience was positive. I was also able to experiment with my eating plan. I am still looking for something that will work with my stomach on these longer runs, while replenishing my energy.
  • Weight loss continues with my new way of eating, which started on March 1. Part of my reasoning to participate in the Relay was that this would force me to deal with my weight issues. So far so good. I am down 26 pounds since January 1. I feel better and have more energy. I feel like my eating is supporting my running rather than my running keeping my eating in check.
  • Every Monday night is running American Camp Trails with my running buddies, who are all younger and faster than me. For the past couple of years I have needed to walk up the steep backside trail to Mt. Finlayson. This has been frustrating for me as I use to run up with no problem. This week was my third week in a row of running up this steep trail. I am happy about that.

Running Schedule for April 1 – 7th.

Monday – 7 miles on trails

Tuesday – 14 miles

Wednesday – 7 miles

Thursday – 14 miles

Friday – 7 miles

Saturday – Rest/Recover Day

Sunday – 30 miles

Total: 79 miles.

I would like to thank all those who have given to help me reach my goal of running $10,000. It seems like a long way to go, but . . . so is 163 miles, but it can be done.

Hope you all have a great week!

Clark

Donate Today I would appreciate it as well as those suffering from the effects of MS.


As I prepare for my relay segment for MS Run the US Relay I have been building my weekly miles. To do so I have been running twice a day. At least during the workdays. My relay segment is 163 miles in which I have 7 days to complete. That’s 23 miles per day. To make things easier on my body and my mind, I am planning of dividing the daily mileage in two. One in the morning and one in the afternoon. Much like I do now.

Twice a day running, or double days, carries great benefits. If you need to build mileage double days is a great way to do without adding extra stress to your legs. Double days are also very good for those with time limitations. Tackling 12 miles might not work with daily commitments, but 6 miles before work and 6 miles after work seems more manageable.

I have used twice a day running before when I needed to make a step-up in my training. Like I’m doing now. Double days allows me to feel comfortable and confident in my training process.

The elites train this way. They have a morning workout, then tend to their day. Their afternoons usually has another run involved. Depending on their workout schedule one workout may have a higher intensity to it. They also get massages.

If you choose to try twice a day running, I would suggest preparing by try 2 miles in the a.m. and 2 miles in the p.m. until you get the hang of it. Be creative too. 4 miles in the a.m. and 6 miles after work gives you a total 10 quality miles. These miles are quality miles due to the fact the the total mileage run in a day is just as important and effective from one long run. I have found this to be true.

Give the twice a day running a try and see how it impacts your running.

If you want to check out what I am doing for MS Run the US Relay, check out this link.

Clark


Late yesterday afternoon I added the links to our active.com registration pages. We have three pages one for each event. Marathon. Half marathon and the 10K.  2013 will be the 11th running of both the marathon and half. The 10K will celebrate it’s third birthday.

We changed the date this year. June 16, Sunday will be our day. 8:30am start time. Moving the date back accomplishes a couple of goals. Puts us in a better place in the regional calendar. That will be nice. Removes us from a very busy weekend here on the island. That will be nice too.  Bottom line is the event will be great.

I will share a secret. This 2013 running will be the last time we use these courses. We feel we need some freshness to it. The need to shake it up exists. Both Paul and I have known this for the last couple of years. That said, we will still be hosting a marathon, half marathon and 10K in 2014. Just a different location with different courses. Maybe an out and back. Maybe a big loop. I think the out and back has merit. If you have an opinion, contact me. I would like to know what you think.

For now, we are off and running. So to speak. Check out San Juan Island Marathon. You will have a good time with bragging rights.


In a few days we will be celebrating the birth of another year.  Oh Joy!  I like New Years, I really do.  I set all these cool goals and aspirations that I want to focus on and then, after a few weeks, give up on them.  I return to my normal way of life.  For example one goal has been to get up at 5:00 am every morning and running for two hours.  Sounds good to me, until 5:00 am and then nothing sounds good except staying in bed.  Normal people do that; stay in bed that is.

I always start the year with goals of races/events I want to participate in.  How many pounds I want to lose (same pounds each and every year).  I write down how I want to be a better person by not walking slowly across the street when I know a car and driver are in a hurry.  I vow not to place any regular apples in the Organic produce section.  Oh yeah.  I can be evil.

Just last week I was in West Seattle to spend an early Christmas weekend with my son and his family.  I was about to share some great thought of mine, when I received that “don’t say it” look from my daughter-in-law.  The mother of my three grandchildren.   Apparently, last summer, I told my 4 year old grandson a story about how I was trapped in an elevator.  (I thought the story very funny).  Apparently he, until last Sunday, wouldn’t step foot in any elevator, even if his most wonderful mother was trying to handle three kids and numerous sacks of groceries.  Last Sunday we took him with us up and down an elevator to ease his mind.  Thank God we didn’t get stuck.  That would have been bad.  Really bad.

I promise to watch what I say around my grandchildren.  Like that is going to happen.

Back to the New Year.

I have some things that are on my list, like running some type of adventure event once a month.  Yes, getting up at 5:00 am to run does count.  I want to run Nookachamps in January, Orcas Island 25K in February.  March is up in the air.  April will be the Yakima River Skyline 50K – like last year’s spanking wasn’t enough.  May will be the Sun Mountain 50 miler -my goal is to finish in daylight.  Also in May I will be participating in the MS Run Across the US – more on that later.  I also want to run around Mt. St. Helen and Mt. Rainer.  Of course, there will be many Doughnut Runs.

What are you planning on running?

Whatever you do, have fun and be safe.

Have a great New Year!

Clark

ps – meet at 11:30 on New Years Eve at San Juan Fitness for a Run In The New Year Fun.  No fee.


Sometimes we lose our running groove.  It happens.  It seems like the mere act of going out for a run is much like herding cats; no matter what effort is applied one ends up frustrated and scratched up.  For me the dark days of winter is when my groove surfaces.  A planned run can quickly get squashed due to pouring rains or high winds.  It’s easier to stay indoors.  It’s easier to stay in one’s comfort zone.

What to do?

The real problem is just getting out the door and running.  When I use to coach professionally, my guideline was that my runners had to run for at least ten minutes.  If after ten minutes they were still not wanting to run they could stop.   Most everyone finished their planned run.

Here are some tricks you might like to try:

  • Run for ten minutes, then make the decision to stop.
  • Make an appointment with a running buddy to go run.  That level of commitment usually works.
  • Start a running streak.
  • Have a motivational saying, quote or picture that you reflect on when you would rather stay on the couch.  (See example below).
  • Pay a fine for every run you bag out on.  This fine can go to a friend, spouse, non-profit, etc..
  • Journal why you run or why you are not running.  Use this writing as a wake-up call.

Whatever it is you do, get out the door and stop herding cats!

Author unknown.

Author unknown.


Triple Ripple is just fun to say.  Makes the mouth feel good.  Try saying Triple Ripple, Triple Ripple, Triple Ripple really fast and a smile will surely form on your mouth.  Go ahead, try it.

The Triple Ripple isn’t a mouth exercise.  It’s short for Orcas Island Triple Ripple Trail Running Festival, a two day running experience starting on October 13th and ending on the 14th.  Kind of like Woodstock, but much, much, much smaller, less music and more running.  Childhood friends Susanna Beck and Jen Volmer, both living on Orcas Island, came up with the idea as a great way to promote fun and different running events on Orcas Island.  Beck isn’t a stranger to trail running having heaped some whoop ass on many a trail during her elite running career.  Volmer is a grace full runner herself, she just doesn’t know it.  Together they blended their creativity and talents to come up with a two day running festival that looks and sounds more like a running camp.  All centered on Orcas Island.

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Race Director James Varner has just opened registration for two of his fall/winter events.

October 8, Mt. Spokane 50 and 25K.  This colorful event which is run on the trails of Mt. Spokane is one of Jame’s events that I have not ran.  I would like to.  My problem is I am schedule to run the Portland Marathon on the 9th.  Might make a fun back to back events with a long drive.  If I am not at Mt. Spokane this year, my heart will be.  I have talked to some who tell me that the color’s of the fall foliage; red, yellow and orange are spectacular and a great way to celebrate the changing season.

December 8, Deception Pass 50 and 25K.  I ran the 25K last year and, to be honest, didn’t really like the course.  The “lollipops” loops created periods where one needed to run, on single track, against the flow of other runners.  I also wasn’t in shape to run, so I had my butt kicked by some of the hills.  But, this is a very popular event and appears in a good spot on the running calendar.  I will probably be at this year’s race.

I always enjoy James’s attitude about race management, which is let’s go run, have fun and spend time chatting afterwards.  James’s post race parties are out of the world.

Both of these races fill up quickly.  Sign-up soon!


I have been challenged by Scott Jurek, one of the greatest ultramarathoners we have seen in the last 20 years or so.  Scott didn’t slap my face  with a pair of synthetic leather gloves, then offer me a choice of swords or pistols.  No, nothing like that.  His challenge was more subtle.

You see, Jurek’s new book, Eat & Run – My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness, authored with Steve Friedman and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, contained a challenge.  Maybe not every reader would find it, but it spoke to me.  I knew that Scott had come out with a new book on eating and running.  It was on my list of books to read.  A week ago, I received a copy from the publishers.  I started reading it when I returned from Winthrop, where I had just completed the Sun Mountain 50 Miler.  I was surprised to learn that this book was not just about eating; although there are cool recipes at the end of each chapter.  This book is a honest look into the life of someone I admire.

For the past two decades Scott Jurek has ruled the ultras.  He won the Crown Jewel, the Western States 100, seven times.  He has won Hardrock, Badwater, Sparatathon, and many others. He set the U.S. record in the World Championships 24 hour run, placing second overall.  He ran 167.5 miles that day in France.  Scott traveled to Mexico to run against the Tarahumara people, which Christopher McDougall detailed in his best seller, Born to Run.  Scott is having an amazing career.  He is living the life that so many of us dream of living.

The thing is, Scott and I are a lot alike, at least in my mind we are.  He is tall and thin.  I’m tall and chubby.  He is from Minnesota. I am from Wyoming.  His father had issues with him and his mom died younger than she should have.  Ditto.  He use to wear his curly hair long. I currently wear my curly hair long.  He is a runner and I’m a runner.  He is a vegan. I eat animals that are vegan.  He is fast and I am so-so.  He is sponsored by Brooks Running and I am a member of the Brooks Running Inspire Daily program.  He designed the Brooks Pure Grit, my favorite running shoe.  How cool.  He lived in Seattle.  I live on San Juan Island.  I actually met Scott before a trail race on Orcas Island in 2010.  Scott finished well and placed 3rd.  I tripped and crashed.  By the time I finished, Scott had a hot shower, massage, two beers and a big bowl of vegan soup.

The point I am trying to make is Scott is just a normal guy.  He grew up like most of us did, went to public school, etc.  He worked hard for what he wanted and what he has accomplished.  He probably was born with some nice genes, but genes just don’t develop on their own.  Training and hard work are required.  Scott arrived at this point in time by doing the work.  Nobody could do it for him.  Greatness takes much effort, daily.

I enjoyed reading Jurek’s book.  It is well written and it kept me interested.  His words inspired me.  I am looking forward to trying some of the included recipes; such as the Minnesota Winter Chili (page 70), the 8 Grain Strawberry Pancakes (page 79), and plan to start my day with a smoothie.

I feel challenged to do more with my life.  To lose the weight I have always wanted to lose.  To look at my food differently and to use food to properly fuel my life.  To run those races that I have dreamed about.  To speed up.  To live my life as I truly want to live.  Eat & Run has inspired me to dig down deep and push myself towards the goals that I want to accomplish.

I highly recommend this book.  Read it and  listen for your own challenge, then do something about it.

Run Happy, Run Hard

Clark


Brooks PureDrift Revealed as Newest PureProject Shoe, Gives Runners the Ultimate Connection with the Ground

 Leading Running Company Announces the Next Generation of its Award-Winning, Lightweight Footwear Collection

Bothell, Wash. – May 22, 2012 – Taking its PureProject collection to the next level, Brooks Sports today unveiled the second generation of its PureProject line, including an all-new shoe, the PureDrift. The lightest shoe in the collection, the PureDrift further amps up the runner’s connection with the ground and his or her body. The new shoe features a natural fit, light mesh upper and the ability to modify the shoe to a zero offset while maintaining surprising comfort. PureDrift launches at retail in Jan. 2013, as part of the second iteration of the PureProject line.

“PureProject was met with a lot of excitement when it launched, as runners gravitated toward the lightweight ride,” said Andre Kriwet, director of footwear product management at Brooks. “As we thought about what was next, our focus shifted to further honing in on fit, and designing an even lighter, more flexible shoe.  Every detail of the PureDrift is engineered to allow the entire shoe to work with the foot in a more natural way. The runner truly drives the experience and the foot drives the shoe.”

Backed by running biomechanics research in partnership with Prof. Dr. Gert-Peter Brüggemann and Prof. Dr. Joseph Hamill, the PureDrift features the original PureProject technologies—Ideal Heel and Nav Band—as well as:

  • ·         A dual toe flex located at the three functional units of the foot, allowing for increased joint articulation and a more connected feel; 
  • ·         A blended BioMoGo DNA midsole that adapts to a runner’s individual gait providing customized cushioning with every step.
  • ·         A removable insole that enables the runner to customize his or her experience from a 4mm offset ready to run out of the box, to a more extreme 0mm offset;
  • ·         A sleeker anatomical upper with an ultra-breathable mesh that gives the shoe a featherweight, nearly invisible quality that delivers the ultimate connected experience.

 Brooks also made updates to the four original PureProject styles to deliver new models: the PureConnect 2PureFlow 2PureCadence 2 and PureGrit 2. These updates utilize the technologies introduced in the original line, while placing increased emphasis on fit. Each upper has an all new design that wraps the foot, delivering a customized feel while allowing the foot to move more naturally.

The PureGrit 2 also debuts a new outsole design. A more aggressive, multi-directional lug pattern provides better traction for maneuvering tough trails.

Brooks PureProject, initially launched in Oct. 2011, introduced a new way to experience lightweight running. This unique position in the market has caused consumers to Run Happy for the last six months. Since October, Brooks has held the number one position in minimalist running footwear sold at U.S. specialty running stores (SRA) and in March, earned 33.3% market share, according to Leisure Trends Group’s Running Specialty RetailTRAK™. Additionally, the PureCadence has consistently stayed on the podium as one of the top minimalist running shoe at SRA, also according to Leisure Trends Group.

The PureFlow 2 and PureCadence 2 will be available at retail starting Dec. 1, 2012, for $100 and $120, respectively. The PureConnect 2 and PureGrit 2 will hit stores on Jan. 1, 2013, and sell for $90 and $110, respectively. The all-new PureDrift will be available also in Jan. 2013, for $100.

For more information on all the updates, visit www.brooksrunning.com/puredrift.

About Brooks
Brooks Sports, Inc. is a leading running company that designs and markets a line of performance footwear, apparel, and accessories in more than 60 countries worldwide. A subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., Brooks was founded in 1914 and is headquartered in Bothell, Wash., near Seattle. The company’s mission is to inspire everyone to run and be active by creating innovative gear that keeps them running longer, farther and faster. Visit www.brooksrunning.com for more information, and follow frequent brand updates on Twitter (@brooksrunning) and Facebook (www.Facebook.com/brooksrunning).



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