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

Tag Archives: suffering

I ran 331 miles in 12 days.

Not all at one time.

In May I ran 167 miles in 7 days from Vernal, Utah to Steamboat Springs, Colorado. In August I ran 164 miles in 6 days from Mahoney City, Pennsylvania to New York City, New York. All for MS Run the US Relay.

I learned a lot about myself and about running.

Want to learn what I learned?

Keep reading.

  1. Getting started. Sometimes when you first wake-up and realize you need to run long, the mind starts telling you all the reasons why you can’t. Leave it to the mind and you’ll stay in bed. I found that getting my feet moving was the key to waking the mind up to what my body could actually do. When the brain gets on board anything can happen.
  2. Real Food is good. That just seems silly to say, but it’s totally true. I have tired most name brand sports drink, gels and the what-have-yous. Running magazines are full of ads that tells us what products works best. My truth is that sports-aid-items do not work for me. I have found that real food in the form of fruits, oatmeal, raisins, nuts, whole grains, and potato chips (I realize that potato chips might not be considered a real food, but it doesn’t come out of a tube) really works for me. I also like water over sport drinks. And Coke. Nothing like a cold satisfying Coke at 10 miles. Just the right amount of sugar, caffeine and pleasure; which can keep me going for another 10 miles. Add some potato chips and I will run 30 miles. Don’t even get me started on doughnuts.
  3. After 28.5 miles. Nothing tastes better.Beer – it’s an acceptable post-run beverage. I am a man of rewards and beer is one of those rewards that can keep me moving forward. Knowing that a cold frosty bottle of brew; which has my name on it, makes those last few miles bearable. Oh, there are some nutritional benefits, but who cares. Right?
  4. Shirtless running. When the sun is out, the temperature warm and the humidity is high I prefer running without a shirt. Please do not give me all that crap about sunburn, sunscreen and skin cancer. We were born to run and we were born to be out in the sun. Period. Give it a try, you’ll find it refreshing. Anton knows. (Disclaimer – local decently laws may apply.)
  5. Wear the right shoes. The right shoes for you, that is. A good running store, like West Seattle Runner, will have you try various models to help you decide what feels good. Pick the shoes that are going to support you on your adventure. I would have been nuts to pick a lightweight, minimal shoe to run 30 miles on pavement. With broken glass and dead snakes.
  6. Brooks GlycerinHigh tech material can make you day. These new tech shirts and shorts will wick (a word a runner never said in 70’s and 80’s) moisture away from your skin. This allows you to stay cool and dry. Easy to pack, carry and dries quickly. Make sure they fit and will not rub you in all the wrong places. If they do rub, get some Body Glide.
  7. Have a great support person or team to help you. These will be people who care about you and will have your food and gear ready for when you’ll need it. They can also do your thinking for you when you aren’t thinking right. Just remember to be nice to them, especially when your Demon Side appears.
  8. Know your equipment. The morning of your adventure is not the time to try to figure out your new GPS watch. Or even a headlamp. You need to know how everything works before you even put them in your pack. Read the manual and experiment.
  9. Know where you are going. External input is nice, but comes with a percentage of error. GPS watches can be off. A nice person may not know what they hell they are talking about. Memory fails. It is your responsibility to know where you are going. Know your route and make notes if needed.
  10. Have Fun! This adventure is yours. You trained and dreamed to do this. Now, go out and have some fun. And be safe.

 

 

Shirtless Running


I know I promised my article – “10 Things I Learned While Running Many Miles Over A Few Days – posted by now. You are just going to have to wait a tad longer. Moving, which we have been doing for the past month, is serious work and takes a lot out of us movers. You could ask any professional mover and they would agree. They would probably hand you their business card as well. I wish that I had been given a mover’s business card. Things could have been much different. Oh, the joys of hindsight. I would rather go run to Texas than have to move again. I am still suffering some sort of trauma from it all. Heavy sigh.

That all said, I am working on the piece and am up to number 4. Please be patient. All good things comes to those who wait. That is what my mom said. I have a sister who likes to say it as well. I must have been a very impatient child if both my mom, and now my sister, are reminding me to be patient

Life in West Seattle is good. There are squirrels living right next door in the vacant house’s attic. They seem like a nice squirrel family. As nice as they come, I think. We didn’t have any squirrels back on the island. Finn and Harper tell me that the house is haunted. Maybe it is. They should know; they’re kids.

I have named one of the squirrels Peppy. I don’t know if it is the male or the female. The art of determining the sex of squirrels is unknown to me. Peppy sits in the apple tree in front of our house. I watch him/her from the large window in my home office. He eats while studying me. Peppy has very small eyes and a very bushy tale. I have seen him hang upside down while eating an apple, which must not be good for his digestion. I have tried to take Peppy’s picture, but he is camera shy. Soon I will outwit him and take his picture. Then I will post it so you can see.

Our cats are freaked out by Peppy and his family. Since they have never seen a squirrel before I think that they think they are odd looking cats. Maybe they are just that. I will need to ask Finn and Harper. They will know and won’t be surprised that I don’t know.

Running has been good for me. I wake up at 4:30 AM and prepare myself for a 5 AM meet-up with son Ammon. We run the streets of West Seattle. He points out things of interest that I won’t remember. I find that there are not all that many cars on the streets at 5; although, I have seen other runners out. I think they are sleepy too. It’s a good time to run, but anytime is a good time to run. Right?

I promise I will have my “10 Things I Learned” piece posted up before the rise of the next full moon. Until then, run happy and run hard.

Clark


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.


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


And ran 15 miles yesterday.

It’s part of my training for the MS Run the US Relay. During the relay I will be running 24 miles days for 7 days. I have many miles to run until May 24 the day that I will start running in Vernal, UT heading to Steamboat Springs, CO.

I have a new buddy, Bill Sinak. He ran 21 miles yesterday. He lives in St. Louis, MO. I have not actually met him, but have gotten to know him through social media and emails. He seems like a cool guy. Here is a nice article about him – Heros. When my Relay segment ends, his begins. I will meet him then. He promises to have a cold beer ready for me. How cool is that? Bill is running 200 miles. In 9 days. Now, how cool is that???

I admire Bill Sinak. Not for the fact that he promises me a beer or that he will be running 200 miles. I admire him for his training and his commitment to participate in this Relay. Bill has MS so he understands things on a deeper level than I do.

Bill Sinak also inspires me. He and I are probably the oldest runners participating. I am 59 and Bill is a youngster at 49. You would think we would have more sense. I keep an eye on Bill’s training. When I don’t feel like running I think of what Bill is doing or has done.

Looking forward to meeting you Bill.

There are 16 of us runners who are participating in the MS Run The US Relay. I have not met any of them. I do know they are all very cool people and they inspire me. I will tell you more about them over the next few weeks.

Our Fearless Leader for the MS Run the US is Ashley Kumlien. Fearless is actually a weak descriptor. Ashley is awesome. Ashley founded the MS Run the US as a way to fund-raise for MS research and education. Ashley’s mom, Jill, has MS.

Ashley inspires me as well. A few years ago she ran the entire distance from Los Angeles, CA to New York City, NY as away to increase awareness of MS. Rumor is she wanted to continue to England, but the Atlantic Ocean became an issue.

Ashley has all this positive energy and puts smiley faces in her Tweets and emails. She is very cool. I admire her as well. I also like to give her a hard time. Comes with the territory of being a Fearless Leader.

Looking forward to meeting you Ashley.

I started this piece telling you that I ran 11 miles today. It seems I wandered off my course, so to speak. While I was running, about mile 8, my feet began to feel tender. Not painful, but just that tenderness that says “us feet down here are doing all this work for you”. My feet are good workers. I reward them by wearing Brooks PureFlow shoes. My feet likes Brooks. This tenderness started me thinking about the people I know or know of who are dealing with MS. Some can’t walk with out a cane or a walker. Some are in wheelchairs. They all share the fact that they live with pain. I can put up with a little tenderness.

These most wonderful people inspire me. This is the reason I am doing what I am doing – preparing to run for this cause. Running for them and for myself. Long May We Run!

You can help by donating towards MS Education and Research. We all appreciate any help you can offer.

Clark Gilbert

March 3, 2013


Today is February 17, 2013. It’s a Sunday. The sky is partly cloudy. No rain. Yeah for that.

Yesterday I posted my intent on running a relay segment for MS Run the US, a fundraiser for multiple sclerosis research and eduction. I am very excited to participate in this relay. Honored too. Some people have passed comments along to me that tell me I am insane. Such comments remind me that I am on target. This is how I want to live me life, by doing insane things.

I have Three Stages of training to get me to Vernal, Utah, where my segment starts and finishes in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, some 164 miles away. I will have seven days to complete this journey. If I don’t, the support staff will shoot me. Well, I might beg them to shoot me, but they probably won’t.

Since the first of the year I have been building my running base. This was Stage One of my strategy. Spending as much time running in the rain to prepare me for running in a very arid part of the country. I know. That doesn’t make sense. We get what we get. During the winter months here in the San Juan Islands, we get rain. Or we got rain. Stage One was designed to get me use to spending more time out running. Rain or no rain. Stage Two, which started the first of February increases my mileage or time I spend running. This Stage two has me running twice a day and running long runs during weekends. I have run one 20 mile run already in February. Good for me.

As of today I have 95 days until I leave Vernal for Steamboat. I think people in Colorado refer to Steamboat Springs by just Steamboat. I will too.

Anyway. I have 95 days. My goal is to run 1,000 miles from today until May 23 (which is also my little sister’s birthday). This plan averages 10.5 miles per day for the next 95 days. That’s doable. I will be running many days where my mileage will be over 20 miles. I will need to get use to that much distance as my relay segment is about 24 miles per day. I have trained like this before when I ran my first 50 miler. It worked then. I am hoping it will work for me again.

If I count all the mileage I have all ready ran this year (240) and add it to the 1,000 goal miles, I will have 1240 miles by the time I start for Steamboat. On paper this all looks good. The challenge comes down to GMBOTD (getting my butt out the door). I except that challenge. I do find that the dark and wet days of our winters to be a challenge for me. Most of the routes I run don’t have street lamps. Just darkness. I have a headlamp for this darkness. I also have a nice Brooks Running rain jacket that is reflective. Reflective material is good for our dark mornings and nights.

I know I will have my challenges. Mostly mental challenges that will keep me indoors. Physically I was born to run. I also run so slow that I couldn’t possibly hurt myself. My challenges are mostly comfort related. Soft, comfy chair and a good book will result in no running. (Must remember not to go to the library).

I can, as they say in Wyoming to “pull up your cowboy boots and get it done.” Actually, I don’t wear cowboy boots. That saying still works for me. I am from Wyoming, you know. Giddyup is another Wyoming term, but it doesn’t apply here. Yippee ki yah has already been taken. Hopefully when I reach Steamboat someone will shout that most famous of all cowboy sayings “Whooooa”. Which means to stop.

I do need your help by donating to the cause. You can do that by clicking I Would Like to Donate. Any amount is appreciated.

Stage Three hasn’t been developed as of yet. Stay tuned, this journey is going to be wild.

Clark


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.


Often, I am asked how to improve as a runner.  I give a simple response; run and run more.  That’s all it takes is a daily practice of running.  Running and more running.  Slow running, fast running.  Running up and down hills.

Years ago I use to listen to motivational tapes (yes tapes) by Bob Richards.  Richards is an Olympian Pole Vaulter who earned the gold medal in 1952 and 1956.  For those of us who where born in the 50′s, know Richards as he man selling Wheaties Cereal on TV.   In one of his talks he said something like “if you want to be good at something do it eight hours a day.  If you want to pole vault, then pole vault.  Whatever you want to become spend the time doing it”.   Good wisdom.

Today, go practice those things you want to be good at.

 


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



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