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

Tag Archives: trail 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.

 


I know. You read the title and chuckled. Everyone does. It’s the Swedish word fartlek. Not fart lick, even though they sound the same. Fartlek means “speed play.” In the running world, any time you mix hard/fast running with a rest period it is considered a fartlek. What makes it different from speed training is that a fartlek is not as structured. I mean, doing speed training on the track might be something like 4 sets of 1 mile with 400m recovery.

A fartlek would be more like running a 7 mile loop, then running for 1 minute at a pace faster than race pace. Next, run for a 1 minute recovery. Or, you could run really hard from one power/telephone pole to the next, then recover. You do that for 5 miles, then run a cool down mile and call the day “good.”

I have found fartleks good in developing both speed and endurance while being a somewhat pleasant experience. Meaning one isn’t just running circles around a track for miles. Fartleks can be a fun way groups can speed train together. For example you have 10 runners running in line and at every minute the runner in the back sprints up to the front and takes the lead. This type of fartlek would be repeated for miles and miles.Not only a great way to build speed and endurance, but a great way to make and develop friendships. My running friends all love me for the crazy ways I come up to train.


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.


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.


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


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


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.


This week has been a good week for me in so many areas.  With my running I felt totally in the game, so to speak.  All of my runs were enjoyable, fun and, like Sunday’s trip to the North Cascades, full of adventure.  May all my runs be that nice.  May all your runs be that nice.

Here is how my week went:
Total Weekly Miles:  69
Total Monthly Miles:  201 (yea!  I made my goal of 200 miles)
Longest Run:  14
Longest Day:  17
Most Adventurous Run:  8 miles in the North Cascade around the Maple Loop Trail with a side trip to Lake Ann
Running buddies:  Susan, Stan the Wine Man and Brendan
Here is some cool haps from around the area:
Candance Burt did a solo run around Mt. Rainer on the Wonderland Trail late last week, then ran solo around Mt. Hood.  Wow, that is some running.  Take a look at her web page.
Cavalles del Vent was held in Spain.  Killian came in first with Kilian Jornet, Anton Krupicka and Dakota Jones place in the top three.  Weather conditions were not the greatest and, most unfortunately a female competitor died from hypothermia.  Very sad.   You can read more about this event from mudsweatandtears.
 

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.

Continue reading


Here as some of the things happening in the Run Happy Run Far world.

  • The Roche Harbor Resort Doughnut Marathon continues to be the most visited page.  Many thanks to the link by Marathon Manics and, of course, Facebook friends for checking it out.  Remember, it’s September 16!
  • Cascade Crest 100 Miles is this weekend, meaning that as I write this at 8:16 pm (Pacific time), runners are settling in for the a night of running.  Run well and safe!
  • James Varner is having a “James’ Birthday Beer Mile” on September 5 – celebrating his birthday.  The “Beer Mile” is a race held on a track where one consumes a beer before each lap.  Should be interesting.  No beer bongs allowed.  Go James Go.
  • Speaking of James Varner and Rainshadow Running, he opened registration for two events, Deception Pass 25/50K and Mt. Spokane 25/50K.  I’m thinking Mt. Spokane.
  • Terry Sentinella and Kevin Douglas completed the Trans-Rockies this week.  From Terry’s Facebook (TR was a tough mother!!! I was not ready to run speed so soon after Badwater. The distance wasn’t an issue just moving fast! I did absolutely love the course, run a little, drink beer,eat a lot, sleep in a tent, and repeat for 6 days. Lot’s of fun!).  Good Job!
  •  The Loop 8.8 K was held on the 18th.  Results can be found here.
  • Doughnut Runs are still every Sunday.  Come join us!

As for me, this week I started training for next year’s Sun Mountain 50 Miler.  9 months of pure running joy.  Stay tuned.


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!


If you know me, you would know that I have been a Doughnut Runner for some time.  Running for doughnuts all started as a reward for getting our weekend runs in.  From Friday Harbor the distance to Roche Harbor, where our doughnuts are baked fresh, is a tad over 11 miles.  Bingo, made a good mid-distance run motivation.  Over the years we have added miles, encouraged people to come run with us and have run for doughnuts in rain, sunshine and snow fall.

For the next few months, Paul Hopkins and myself, will be hosting a Sunday morning Doughnut Run, from San Juan Fitness to Roche Harbor.  See the details below and schedule some time for a run.

Clark

Doughnut Run Details

What: 11.2 mile run from San Juan Island Fitness to Roche Harbor Resort.  Open to all levels of runners.

When: Every Sunday morning, starting August 5 at 8:00 a.m. from San Juan Island Fitness

Why: For the love of donuts. And these aren’t just any donuts, these are Roche Harbor doughnuts!

Bring: Water/electrolyes. Some cash for dooughnuts and coffee.Ride back: There are no formal rides back to town.

Entry fee: Free.


View of Sun Mountain area, take by Candice Burt

My first attempt  to 50 miles run is in two days at Sun Mountain.  It’s all coming down to the wire, so to speak.  I had hoped that this week would have been quiet and relaxing, but, life happens.  It’s all good.  Right.

I am taking this day off from work to attend to a mire of things to prepare for this weekend.  Camping gear to sort, running clothes and shoes to check out.  Prep my pack with GU.  My truck, Old Blue, is getting a new starter.  Oh Joy.  Maybe a nap in the afternoon and some time in reading – a day for some type of rest and relaxation.

Speaking of reading, did you catch the NPR article about endurance athletes and pain, if not, check it out from NPR.  I am going to do my own form of research on Sunday.

If you want to follow my crazy adventure this Sunday, I will be posting via Facebook and Twitter.

No mater what happens, I am gonna be having a great time.  I’ll be Running Happy and Running Hard!

Clark

ps  Here is a picture of my shoes


Taper.  I really don’t like taper weeks.  I feel like I should be running a ton of miles, but the voice of reason is to rest, avoid injuries and attend to the fine details of the plan.  Come to think of it, I need to order some GU.

Last week I was having an issue with my feet; soreness on the pad behind the big toes on both feet.  I think I have a handle on that and have run over 10 miles with mild tenderness.  Last week there was a point where I thought it best that I not run the 50 miler.  As of May 10, the 50 miler is still my goal and target.

I chatted with James Varner, Race Director of Sun Mountain, and he described the course in more detail which took away some of my stress.  (Yes, this is the same guy who said the Yakima Skyline Rim 50K was “a little rocky”.)  He explained that I need to  conserve energy by walking the hills and then run everything else.  This seems like a good idea to me, but my in my training I ran all my hills, even the steep ones.  Ok, maybe I did walk a couple of really steep hills, but not very often.

The thing about this 50 miler is:  I have never ran this type of event before.  The training approach is so outside my knowledge and experience.  I feel like a child starting first grade.  What do I do and how do I do it?  One could go on-line and find a million training programs for marathon distances and below.  Try to find a training program for a Ultra and you’ll find a picture of a tumbleweed blowing across the wasteland.  I have been training as I see best, but, truth is, I really don’t know what in the hell I am doing.  Long runs, yes.  Time on my feet, yes.  Speed running, yes.  Eating on the run, yes.  Setting a broken arm while continuing to run, still working on that one.  I only have two arms.  This 50 mile run is such a different beast; you train different and you have to think different in order to finish.

Ultramarathon Champion, Scott Jurek, has written ” Listen to and manage the body (hydrate, eat, technique, etc.), and when you think you have nothing left, dig deeper!”  I suppose you could rephrase this to “eat, drink and be merry”, but I don’t think that is the message.  Jurek’s simple statement is ultramarathoning.  It’s all about managing who we are and what we are truly capable of.  Putting one foot ahead of the other and giving the body what it needs to hydrate and nourish it’s self.

Now, let me see if I can do all that in a rapid motion.

 



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