Monday, June 29, 2009

Western States 100

Gail and I went down to Auburn to check out the Western States 100 Trail Race. We had a blast hanging out and the Aid Stations and getting a bit of a run in. The temperature was 97 degrees at the Forest Hill AS and over 100 down in the canyons. It was a rough day to try and do a 100 mile run. Kudo's to the 280 or so (out of 400 starters) that finished the race in under 30 hours.

Forest Hills AS

Notice the sign

Early posting on the wall of the times. Go Oregon!

Zack ended up in the top 5 I think.

You gotta get your weight checked at most AS.

Drop bags laid out nicely.

More early runners coming in. This AS was at
the 100k point. (62 miles)

Sean Meissner of Sisters. He was having a
rough time here with gut problems.

Most the time you would see his feet flying.
The heat was taking its toll on everyone.
Sean was about in 45th place here.

Gulp gulp gulp...ahhhh! At this AS the runners
would pick up their pacers.

WS trail sign near Rucky-Chucky.

Mile 72 and ya gotta cross the American River
The girls would be up their necks in the early
part of this crossing.

Who is that girl!!! Go Detour. I had to hold her
back from crossing the river.
The wet area is how high the river is normally.
The get the damn up stream to lower the flow
for just this day of the race. Pretty cool!

There is gator's in that river!!!!

AS volunteers spend up to two hours
in the river assisting the runners.
The busiest time is around 2 AM.
These pix were around 8pm

Gail and I running back up the canyon. It
doesn't look steep but we climbed over 1,000
feet in about 2.3 miles. Temps over 90 here.
She is so awesome of a hill climber!

Fat Boyee is pretty happy. Out on
the trails running at the greatest
Ultra of them all. Some day folks,
some day.

We got to the finish line just as Hal Koerner won
the race in around 16 hours and 25 minutes.
We hung around for another couple hours and
watched 15 or so other runners come in, including
the top 3 women.
Gail and I both said this was the most fun we
have had in a long time. Good job to all the runners
who even started this race.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Forest Park 50k

I am the worst blogger in the world. I have been so lazy to write in this thing. I just put it off and I am 3 races behind in my posts. I know not many folks follow my blog or at least you never post comments, but I often post for my own knowledge in the future. I enjoy going back and looking what I thought about a previous race I did. What can I learn from last years race? I do that before I run any race a second time and it has helped me in most cases.

Well this post is about the Forest Park 50k back on May 24th. It was going to be a great day to run with mostly clear skies and mild temps. I parked at the bridge on Thurman and just went a 100 yards down the stairs to Macleay park where the race starts. It is so sweet to have this nice races 10 miles from your house. My buddy Eric was going to run the 20k so he was there. So was Sarah, Marc and big guy Bart. Marc hadn't run over 5 miles in the last 6 months or so and now he was going to do 31 miles. Hey, its so Marc! So we all had a great chat before the race as we stand in line for the "blue boxes".

The race started and Eric and I just hung back. He let me set the pace and we just cruised up the hill. The first six miles of this race are mostly up hill so we just ran what we could and walked some of the rest. We chatted while Eric picked out a few "Targets" for his solo run back to the finish. (He knows what I am talking about.)

Around mile 5 we saw Sarah and Bart and they yelled for me to speed up and catch Marc and tell him to slow down. I usually catch Marc somewhere between mile 15 and 20 on these races. He likes to push it early and I just putt-putt along. At the 10k point we hit AS number 1.

My stomach was not happy and I refueled and set Eric back to the finish. We ran this is 1:12 or so. I told him he would do around 55 minutes back in and that ended up to be what he did. I spent almost 15 minutes at this AS. I had to get my stomach issues fixed before I could leave. So probably no PR today with that delay.

I left the AS and headed out down the canyon. Its a nice downhill run for a mile or so. The climb on the other side isn't too bad either. I enjoy this part of Wildwood. I was just bouncing along at a 10 minute pace or so enjoying the woods and great condition of the trail. I dropped onto the climb up Salzman road. I decided to run the entire thing this year. I didn't struggle too bad. At the top is AS 2 at around mile 12? Next we drop down into the 10k loop. This is the fun part. So steeps on the fire lanes, some nice Wildwood then some steep climbs and finally the big ass downhill on the Oil Pipeline trail. Last year was wet and I fell twice. I forgot how steep it really is. Then we drop onto Leif road. This is where last year Marc and I missed the firelane and ended up running a bit extra. But this year I was ready and found it. We do the big climb back to AS 3 at around mile 18. I see Marc finally and catch him at the AS. We chat for a bit and he says he is pretty much walking it in from here.

Out of the AS is a great run down Salzman. I cruise at sub 9 and enjoy the downhill trot. We hop back on Wildwood and go back the way we came. I feel pretty good. I pass a few folks but a few pass me too. I don't seem to fast today. Hmmm....I wonder if its because I ran a killer 50k two weeks earlier. I just put on my tunes and drift away in my running. Around mile 24 I am climbing up a hill. I see a man with his dog standing above me on the trail waiting for me to pass. It is a good climb here so I put my head down to focus. Then I see a slobbery tennis ball come rolling down the hill towards me. I laugh! Too funny, the dog dropped his ball as he is a bit nervous as I come towards him. I toss the ball to him but he won't take his eyes off me. This was a great break for me emotionally.

I get into the finally AS at mile 25. I am tired now, but juiced up that the last 6 miles are mostly downhill or flat. So off I go hoping to get a good time in. As I run I don't feel right. Sort of dizzy or light headed. Stomach isn't great. I try to push but not allot is in the tank. I have gel'd and drank but now even water turns my gut. Oh well, its easy from here. I run 95% of the course. I pass a few more folks on the downhills. I hit the Macleay trail and know the finish is a mile or less. This trail is super rocky so I try to be careful yet still push it a bit. Being such a nice day there are tons of walkers out. I try to be polite and know they have just as much of a right to be here as me.

I bust out of the woods to the park and see the finish line. I am tired but don't feel dead. I cross the line in 6:02:11. I wanted to break six but it was faster than last year. Sarah and Marc cheer as I cross. I go for a walk to cool down but start feeling like crap. I grab some chilli and head to my car within 15 minutes.

The drive home I started to get real light headed. I was thinking where will I pull off the road if I don't feel good enough to go any further? I hate this!!! I get home and just drag my sorry ass into the house. I grab my cell phone and go into the living room. I lay flat on the floor and put my feet up on the couch so they are higher than my heart. I feel so bad that I keep the cell phone by me in case I need 911. I mean, I feel scary bad. I have not felt this bad in a long time. I lay this way for 45 minutes. I feel a tad better so I slowly get up. Take a quick shower to get the dirt off and go right to bed. I end up laying in bed for almost 3 hours, dozing off and on. I can't turn on my side as feel sick. Misery for a few more hours. Gail calls me on her way home at 6:30 pm. She offers to get me a coke slurrpy and I take her up on it. Caffeine really seems to help me. By the time she gets home I am feeling a bit better. The drink helps and an hour later I am ready for pizza!

I really hate being like this. My last two races this has happened again. I do have new condition that I have been diagnosed with. My thyroid is basically failing. So I will be on hormone therapy for life. I am supposed to feel tired and other things associated with low metabolism but I am pretty much the opposite of that. I attribute my crashing after these races to low blood pressure. Maybe this is part of the reason? I don't know but it sucks to die so hard after a race. If any experts have thoughts let me know.