Monday, December 22, 2008


I bought Marley on Saturday and took her immediately to Bartlett Park for an 8 mile run. After the first few miles, she became accustomed to running next to me on the leash without putting a tree between us and clothes-lining us. The weather and the Christmas holiday have kept us out of the woods since, but we hope to return this weekend.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

St. Jude Marathon Report

At David Ray's request, I give you the report...

It was fucking cold and crowded. This was my third road marathon and I have still yet to think of a real good reason why I would want to run a fourth. Over five hours of constant pounding tends to hurt a wee bit, especially for a big boy like me.

The absolute best part of this marathon (besides raising $$$ for the children of St. Jude!) was running the first half with my better half! This was my wife Jennifer's first half marathon and her first run over ten miles. I wanted to pace her most of the half just to make sure she was ok. I told her we would start out slow and then slow down from there, but she would have none of that. Hell, at times I had trouble keeping up with her! At mile 9-ish, I decided it was time for me to put my arse in a higher gear and left her to run her own race.

I felt good, but knew my goal of sub-5 hours was long gone. I caught up with Leigh Tanner at the 12 mile mark and chit chatted a bit. I told her to mosey on and stopped at the half turn-off to see Jennifer finish. I waited for what seemed like 10 minutes, but probably was more like 5 when I saw her cruising toward the finish line. After exchanging congrats and I love you's, I started the second half. The time clock now read 2:32:55...definitely not breaking sub-5!

The second half was fairly uneventful. Being so far back, I didn't have to fight for water or gels and had much of the road to myself. I passed a lot of lonesome runners in the next 7 miles and still felt good. I even had a good burst of speed around mile 17 that surprised me. At mile 19, I ran into an old high school friend who was entertaining the runners. I stopped for a few minutes to chat with him before moving on. No need to rush now, I just wanted to enjoy the run and the sunshine.

By mile 20, my hip and knee started to hurt more. My energy level was dipping, so I increased the gel consumption. Jan Show passed me here (same place as last year!), looking fresh and happy (she finished about 20 minutes ahead of me). I really need to get with her on strategy!!

During the next few miles, my hip/knee pain increased forcing me to slow down (as if I weren't already moving slow enough!). I could feel my energy leaving my body and the self-doubt replace the void. I didn't hit the wall until mile 25. The final 1.2 miles were a bitch. I struggled to keep up a shuffle and my legs were starting to cramp. They put a nasty little uphill section at mile 25.5 and I cursed them under my breath. The final quarter mile was thankfully downhill and I cruised in at 5 hours and 22 minutes (2 min slower than last year). After finishing and eating, I felt good without problems. If they asked me to run another 6 miles, I think I could have with little problem.

Maybe I could have finished a sub-5 if I had not paced Jennifer for the first half. This is irrelevant, because I wouldn't have missed running with her even if it meant a 6 hour finish for me! The next half marathon for her will be in March (Germantown) and, if she wishes, I will run with her then also! If not, then I will smoke her ass...and be waiting at the finish to see her in!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Back To The Trails

It's time to gear up for the Swamp Stomper (Jan 18th). With coaching help from Sherpa John, I will start my training over with low week day mileage and long runs on the weekends. My problems in the past was ramping up the mileage too fast, causing all sorts of aches, pains, and injuries...and burn out.

Y2K? No, My 2K Damn it...

Almost past the 2k mark! Had I known I was so close, I would have gone the extra 0.7 on the treadmill today! I just had my shower, so no more for today...but, tomorrow we cross over 2,000 miles.

2008 Stats
Distance: 1999.3 Mi
Time: 404:28:23(16 days, 20 hours)

Saturday, December 13, 2008


My sinuses have been freely flowing one minute and then stopped up the next. Three days of Thera-Flu have yet to clear my head. I don't have any body aches, so I guess I should be at least a bit thankful.

Two runs on the treadmill for a total of 10.2 miles cleared the sinuses for a bit, but once I got off the dreadmill, the Niagara Falls of snot continued. Of course, a bit latter and it was the Hoover Dam of snot.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

St. Jude Marathon

Thursday, December 4, 2008

A Boring Week

I have run only 5 miles this week. I hate taper week. Hopefully, all my injuries will be resolved during this lazy, boring week. I can't wait for Saturday's marathon...I can finally run!

This will be my wife's first half marathon...first anything greater than 5k! I know she is ready and will do fine, but she is worried about the race and most worried about the weather. The projected low of 29 and high of 50 sounds like perfect running weather to me!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Stranger's Panties

Alternative title: Turkey Day Fat Ass 20k

We are in Ripley, TN at my wife's parents for Thanksgiving. I figured this was a great opportunity to run a route that is new. I set out after breakfast, hoping to cover 5-6 miles and make it back in plenty of time for lunch. I had some pain behind my right knee that I attribute to squatting and kneeling on the floor while putting the treadmill together the other night. I needed to run, but did not want to cause any injuries a week before the marathon!

I ran down the highway and into town (around the 5k mark) and all felt ok. Since I had no idea where to go next, I assumed taking a right would be ok...and then a left...and then another left. Hell...I will just run until I hit the 10k mark and then reverse course. As I crossed a railroad trestle, I noticed a pair of white panties lying on the sidewalk. Strange sight, but thought better of picking them up and taking them home to the wife! I doubt she would like them and, besides...she has plenty already.

For those of you who are not familiar with ain't missing much. It's a small town out in the country about 50 miles north of Memphis. Running through the countryside is a pleasure, but not knowing where the hell I was going was a concern. I passed a little store and thought it best to stop for more water and a Red Bull. Since it was fairly cool out, my water consumption was low and I knew my current bottle would last at least 8 more miles.

Using my iphone gps, I located myself on the map and planned out a route back into town and back to the in-laws. My hip and knee were doing ok, but a little stiff. I kept a slow pace so I wouldn't aggravate them. Lunch time was approaching quick and I figured I still had an hour's worth of distance to cover. At an intersection, I was unsure if I should take a left or right. I chose left, but reversed to the right after a hundred yards. Still not totally sure if I was heading in the right direction, I looked down a noticed those white panties again! Then I was positive in my directions! Our family dinner was saved by the panties of a stranger!

The run was great and I enjoyed the wonderful weather we are currently having! It's a good feeling to be running (semi-) pain free again. Total mileage for the day was 12.30 in a bit less than 2.5 hours (11:44 pace).

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


We have finally purchased a treadmill. It was a BITCH getting it out of the box and upstairs! It must weigh at least 400 pounds! Assembly was fairly easy...if you actually read the directions! After I got it setup, I ran a slow 5k on it while testing all the bells and whistles. I plan to wake 45 minutes early each workday for a run to increase my mileage without decreasing my family time.

[EDIT] My alarm went off at 0415. I did not get to bed until well after midnight...needless to say, I turned the alarm off and got another 45 minutes of sleep. Oh well...

Sent via iPhone 3g

Monday, November 24, 2008

Jumpin' Jehosaphat!

Short on time, I wanted to push today's run as fast as possible (for my fat ass). I hit the 5k mark in 28:34 and then finished the run with an easy cool down for a total of 4 miles. Of course, this is not blazing fast for most runners, but coming off an injury and lack of mileage the past two weeks, I felt like I was flying.

No pains, aches, or troubles! Hopefully, my recent injury is now considered history.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Injury Update

Jennifer and I started our run after lunch, hoping the temps would be higher (no such luck). The sky was overcast and the temperature hovered at a balmy 44 degrees. I was hoping my hip/knee crap had gone away and Jennifer was hoping her knee/calf pain had done the same.

Our plan was for a easy half marathon on the Wolf River Path. This was to be her last long mileage run before her first attempt at the St. Jude Half Marathon (her previous long run was 10 miles). By mile five, her right knee was troubling her enough for us to walk back to the car and call it a day. I think it's ITB that is causing her pain due to the increase in mileage on the streets. Her "coach" (me!) suggested that she keep the mileage low on the streets and try to stick with the elliptical until the race. I want her to make it to the starting line healthy!

Me, on the other hand...I had some lingering aches in the hip, but not enough to slow me down or cause any worry. After we left the WRP, I went home, changed clothes, and hit the gym for another 10 miles...bringing my daily total to 16 miles. I also worked the legs with the weight machines prior to running. I expected to be in a bit of pain today, but was pleasantly surprised.

Today's run was dx'd due to household chores and Christmas shopping. My hip and knee have felt great today and I hope to be back running the streets again! Two 25 mile weeks have been ok to rest, but it's sure boring!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Time Off

My hip/knee pain is still present, although it seems to be fading. I went to my chiro yesterday for an adjustment and he suggested I use a wedge in my right shoe (since my right leg is somewhat shorter than the left). We'll see how this works on tomorrow's run.

Except for nine miles on Monday, I have not run another step. I am hoping to be rid of my injury(ies) well before the marathon, leaving me enough time for a few semi-long runs...but time is running out. I will attempt a half marathon with my better half tomorrow and if all goes well, another half on Sunday. If the pain recedes and I am able to run, I will jack my mileage back up to 50 for next week and 20 for the week before the marathon on December 6th.

Once the marathon is over, I can retreat back to the trails and start my prep for the 2009 Swamp Stomper in Shelby Forrest. I can hardly wait to be back in the woodline.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


After Wade's, I started my street running in prep for the St. Jude Marathon. I am on my second pair of Adidas Adizero XT's, which have served me well on the trails. They are very light, but not very thick-soled. Changing from soft trails to hardball without changing my shoes was not one of my brighter ideas.

Last Saturday's long run turned fairly short due to right knee and hip pain due guessed it...running in the Adizero's (which have well over 300 miles on them). The first run was with my better half, Jennifer. She is training for the half marathon, so we ran the Chickasaw trail at Shelby Farms. After ten miles, we said adios. She headed home and I went to the Wolf River Path for more running.

The car ride from the Ranger's station to WRP is only about five minutes, but I stopped at a gas station for a snicker bar and a coke on the way. Then I parked at the Chik-Filet and used their "facilities". All in all, it was about 45 minutes before I attempted to run again. I guess that my old body decided to cramp up a little from all the sitting. Add that to the worn out trail shoes and my right knee and hip were screaming. I tried to run through it. I tried to walk through it. Nothing seemed to help. After six miles of pain, I called it a day. After an easy four miles on Sunday, the pains were still present. It was long past time for a break.

Four days without running or gym time and new pair of Brook's Adrenaline GTS 8's, I hope my body is ready to resume running. The knee pain is gone, but the hip pain seems to prefer to hang around. My daily job consist of me sitting on my ass all day and that tends to aggravate the hips...but I have to bring home that paycheck!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Wade's Big Adventure

I made it to the starting line with plenty of time to socialize. Multiple calls to mother nature seemed to have cured my lower GI issues and I hoped it would remain that way. It's a bitch to wander off the trail to find a secluded spot to do number 2, but when you have have to.

The race began on time, with the 18 milers leaving ten minutes before the 8 milers. I held pace with the rest of the Memphis Ultra crew on the outbound section and enjoyed the banter and companionship. This is quite a welcome change from my usual solitary runs. My piriformis issues started to haunt me around mile 6, but I was able to keep up with the team. Right before the turn-around, I had to slow pace and start my stretches to hopefully alleviate the oncoming problems. The team continued to rock on...hopefully I wasn't sandbagging them too much!

After the turn-around, I stopped for some better stretching on the ground. I took two Aleve and two S-Caps! and turned on the ipod. I was back to being alone and prayed the music would keep me moving at a decent clip. Five other runners passed me as they headed to the turn-around. At least, I consoled myself, I wasn't DFL.

The five runners behind me never caught up, nor did I catch anyone in front of me. I did see the runner behind me on the levee, but he was at least a quarter to half mile back. I put the hammer down to insure he never got any closer.


I finished in 3:22:59. Maybe I could have done better...I know I could have done worse. It was great to run with the Memphis Ultra crew and I look forward to running many more miles with them in the future.

This was my last trail race for the year, so I will start my training for the St. Jude Marathon (December 6th). The transition from trails to hardball means more speed, but also more aches and pains. After the marathon, its back to the trails for January 2009 edition of Swamp Stomper.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


First, overindulging on meat lovers pizza the night before a race is not a good idea. After many pit stops, I finally arrived at what I thought was the starting area with 20 minutes to spare. The problem was there was no one there! A quick call to my friend Cliff (sorry to wake you, Cliff!) and I find out that the race does not start until 8. Well...shit.

I am actually happy to be an hour and a half early. I had skipped my java at home and now had time to stop by Starbucks for my fix and know.

It's 0700, so I have plenty of time to spare...and, well...stretch.

Sent via iPhone 3g

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Update On My Ass

Yesterday's long run was to test my sore ass. I was somewhat pain free the first 10 miles. After that, I had to spend time stopped on the trails stretching. The run went well, until I ran out of gas at mile 17. Besides an omelet for breakfast, I forgot to eat anything else or take anything with me...except water and a Clif bar. Doh!

Today's run was ok. Stiffness in my right calf, but my arse didn't bother me too much. Once again, some stretching during the run helped tremendously.

This Saturday is Wade's Big Adventure. I ran into Wade Saturday as he was out marking the white trail on the WRT. I am glad he picked the white's more of roller coaster ride that the others.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Pain in the Ass

I have not run for the past few days in hopes of healing up a nagging hip injury. My right hip has bothered me off and on for some time and, after last weeks long run, it has become more of a problem to run without significant pain or an altered gait (which creates even more problems!). I have diagnosed the problem as Piriformis syndrome

Here's what I look like after a dozen miles:

Hopefully the rest (with a lot of stretching) will be enough to allow me to run this weekend! I am not planning any runs over 10 miles since I have run long the past few weekends. There are two weeks to go before Wade's Big Adventure and a bit over a month for the St. Jude's Marathon, so I need to stay healthy and whole.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Today's Long Run

Getting ready for Wade's Big Adventure:

I had no idea if I was on the correct trail for Wade's (on the east side of Germantown Rd). There was a lot of overgrowth on some sections that made it very hard to run. Briars, brambles and sticker bushes were the norm. Every now and then, I would see orange trail marking tape hanging from trees, so I tried to follow. The trail petered out onto a sand bar on the Wolfe River, so that's were I turned around. I followed another trail half-way back, which was better maintained. This part of the trail had marking tape everywhere and there was no clear sense of direction. I was enjoying my run and still had water, so I just ran willy-nilly until I finally made it back to the original trail.

I took a right turn to exit back to Lowe's...well before I was supposed to and ended up with a 40 foot gully full of water blocking my way. I had run through this same gully earlier and it was bone dry! What the fuck?! Of course, looking at my GPS after the run I could see that I was not where I thought I was! I was out of water and figured I would follow a trail to the north and exit into the adjacent neighborhood and take the streets back to G'town Rd. This was probably not a great idea in the trail turned almost non-existent and very wet.

I finally made it back to the Circle K mini mart and had a quick lunch break. The next portion of the run was on the all to familiar white trail, heading to the ranger station for the next water refill. After that, I hit the Chickasaw trail and then about half of the Tour de Wolfe, exiting the park at the dog area and running back to G'town Rd and back to my car.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

The 40 Runner’s Commandments

Borrowed from Carey Smith's blog:

The 40 Runner’s Commandments
by Joe Kelly

1. Don’t be a whiner. Nobody likes a whiner, not even other whiners.
2. Walking out the door is often the toughest part of a run.
3. Don’t make running your life. Make it part of your life.
4. Keep promises, especially ones made to yourself.
5. The faster you are the less you should talk about your times.
6. Keep a quarter in your pocket. One day you’ll need to call for a ride.
7. Don’t compare yourself to other runners.
8. All runners are equal, some are just faster than others.
9. Keep in mind that the later in the day it gets, the more likely it is that you won’t run.
10. For a change of pace, get driven out and then run back.
11. If it was easy, everybody would be a runner.
12. When standing in starting lines, remind yourself how fortunate you are to be there.
13. Getting out of shape is much easier than getting into shape.
14. A bad day of running still beats a good day at work.
15. Don’t talk about your running injuries. People don’t want to hear about your sore knee or black toe.
16. Don’t always run alone.
17. Don’t always run with people.
18. Approach running as if the quality of your life depended on it.
19. No matter how slow, your run is still faster than someone sitting on a couch.
20. Keep in mind that the harder you run during training, the luckier you’ll get during racing.
21. Races aren’t just for those who can run fast.
22. There are no shortcuts to running excellence.
23. The best runs sometimes come on days when you didn’t feel like running.
24. There is nothing boring about running. There are, however, boring people who run.
25. Distance running is like cod liver oil. At first it makes you feel awful, then it makes you feel better.
26. Never throw away the instructions to your running watch.
27. Don’t try to outrun dogs.
28. Don’t wait for perfect weather. If you do, you won’t run very often.
29. When tempted to stop being a runner, make a list of the reasons you started.
30. Without goals, training has no purpose.
31. Go for broke, but be prepared to be broken.
32. Spend more time running on the roads than sitting on the couch.
33. Make progress in your training, but progress at your own rate.
34. “Winning” means different things to different people.
35. Unless you make your living as a runner, don’t take running too seriously.
36. Never tell a runner that he or she doesn’t look good in tights.
37. Never confuse the Ben-Gay tube with the toothpaste tube.
38. Preventing running injuries is easier than curing them.
39. Running is simple. Don’t make it complicated.
40. Running is always enjoyable. Sometimes, though, the joy doesn’t come until the end of the run.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Tour d'Esprit = Tour d'Pain

All seemed right before the start. I felt great and had no injuries. My initial plan was to cover 50 miles within the first 12 hours and then take it easy for the remaining 11 hours.

I needed to maintain about a 14 minute pace to reach 50 miles in 12 hours. Thinking my pace would slow after 6-7 hours, I tried to push the pace somewhat at first. All was going great until mile 16-17. My left knee slightly buckled and felt like someone had pushed a small stick into the lateral aspect of it. My initial thought was that I tore a ligament. I stopped running and tried to stretch it out. I then ran another 10 feet and the pain came back. I decided to continue to walk and the pain subsided. Thinking I had dodged a bullet, I began running the next lap. For about half a mile I took it easy, slowing my pace and praying for the best. The pain returned and so I just figured I would power hike and re-evaluate later.

At 8pm, Jennifer and Sydney brought me a delicious dinner of pizza! We sat in my little camp and chowed down. After a wonderful treat of pizza and seeing my beautiful wife, it was time to get back on the track. Sydney (who is 8) wanted to run a lap with me. After walking the first quarter mile to warm up and test the knee, we ran about a 13 minute pace the remainder of the lap. After saying our goodbyes, I got back to business.

The pain would come and go, depending on my pace. When it felt good, I ran. When it felt bad, I walked. I tried to keep the walking pace between 14 and 16 mpm. I was getting very discouraged and worried about my knee.

After 31 miles, I decided it best to pack up and not cause any further injury. It was a very hard decision and I took a lot of time making it. I felt like a failure, but knew if I had continued I would regret it.

I have yet to see the results of the race, but when I left James Holland was around 50 miles and Elizabeth Holliday was right behind him. They were both still running fresh! Jan Show was at mile 38 and was not slowing down. I hope they all did well as the night wore on!

Side note: I have decided to keep all races under 50k until I can get my weight under 200. I am at 225 now and my knees are taking a pounding running ultra distances. Hopefully by March '09 (the next MS50), I will be ready for a race greater than 50k.

EDIT: The results are in....I came in 2nd in my age group (the man in 1st just had 41 miles). Overall winner was James Holland with 93 miles. Elizabeth Holliday ended up with 81 and Jan Show with 76 miles. Ten time attendee Harry Strohm had 35. Full results here.

Saturday, September 27, 2008


I had to get in one more long run before the dreaded taper. The weather is just too beautiful not to be out running Shelby Farm! I ran the Chickasaw Trail and Tour d'Wolfe twice to finish with 21 miles. My right knee did not want to cooperate and I tried to run through the pain...which changed my gait...which then caused right hip pain. Fuck. It's a bitch being old.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I Hate Tapering

The Tour d'Esprit is 8 days away. Now it's time to taper...which I hate to do. My weekday mileage is at 20 and I plan on doing at least 20 this weekend before the complete taper.

Posted by ShoZu

Friday, September 19, 2008


Don't you love this weather?! It makes running outside so much easier and enjoyable!

I am on track for my upcoming 24 hour run (Tour d'Esprit), two weeks from tomorrow. My goals are multiple...

1. Actually keep moving for the entire 24 hours! Last year, I climbed in the tent after about 9 hours and slept for 7 hours before returning to the track.

2. Make 50 miles within the first 13 hours (hopefully around 10 hours...but I am a pessimist!).
3. Make 75 miles within the 24 hours (if all is going great, then see goal #4).
4. Make 100 miles within the 24 hours.
5. Have as much fun as possible.

Tonight's run:

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Uploaded - 9\17\08

Posted by ShoZu

Test post from iphone using Shozu.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Mile 10...

...of today's run (taken on the yellow trail at Bartlett Park).

Monday, September 1, 2008

I Made It.

I really did not think that I would top 200 miles for the month of August...but, by damn it, I did! In fact, I made it to 204 miles. This is nothing compared to people like Anton Krupicka, but hey...I have a full time job and a family (nothing against Tony)!

I took Friday off, thinking I would not even get close to 200 anyway. I even slept in late and was fairly lazy Saturday morning. Once I finally hit the road, I was planning on just 8-10 miles. Well, one mile turned into two and two into four, etc, etc. I finally arrived home with 16 good miles in the bag and felt good enough for another 4.5 later in the day. Sunday was 12 at the gym, with another 4.7 at night with Jennifer. To make this long story short...I ended up with 72.7 for the week and 204.7 for the month.

Hopefully, the hot Memphis summer is coming to an end and we can run outside more in the near future.

Saturday's first run:

Saturday, August 30, 2008


Taken and submitted via iPhone.

Powerlines Run

Part of my Saturday run. I was tired of dodging cars, so I ran up the powerlines alley. I wonder how much EMF I absorbed?!

Taken and submitted via iPhone.

Monday, August 25, 2008

My Aching Hips...

I took a much needed rest last week. My hips were feeling rusty and somewhat painful...which I contribute to an increase in blacktop mileage. I was hoping to top 200 miles for the month, but with only 7 days left and about 70 miles short, I doubt I will attain my goal. Oh well...I guess I can try harder next month.

I spent the weekend in Pensacola for my youngest son's 18 birthday. While it's great to see both of my boys, it is a very long trip for only two days! Sitting in the car for 8 hours at a time doesn't allow for my hips to feel any better. I guess I am getting old and will have to accept that fact and learn to live with it! Of course, my job consists of me sitting on my ass a lot during the that doesn't help as well. Getting old is a bitch.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Is Summer Over?!

After missing the last two days worth of running due to laziness, I finally hit the streets. The weather was least compared to the past month. It was an excellent run of 9 miles on the blacktop, all non-stop.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Another Crushing Blow

Another 50 miler pissed to the wind (or to the heat!).

First...have I said how hot it was yet? Well, it was hell hot! Official temps were 106 (actual) with a heat index of 133! Let me repeat...a heat index of 133 degrees!!

The first loop was great. No problems. Two potty breaks. I was sweating like pig (yes, I know...pigs don't sweat), but all systems go. Eight miles in 1:45, fifteen minutes to spare according to my 50 mile plan. Reload supplies, hit the outhouse, and back on the trail at the 1:55 mark.

The second loop went slightly slower, but still on track. My nutritional plan seemed to be working ok. Finished loop two at the 4 hour mark. Loaded the Camelbak and grabbed a Red Bull and hit the trail for loop three.

The chatty cathy's (3 women who you could hear a mile away just cackling) were gaining on me. I refused to allow this to happen, so I increased my pace slightly. Their annoying banter faded as I increased the distance between us. Around mile 17, I hit the wall and I hit it very hard. Well shit. I used Sustained Energy the first two loops and switched to gel on this loop (the S.E. was tasting nasty in the heat). My energy output was now far exceeding my energy input. I had a Nutella sandwich on this loop, but it didn't seem to touch me. The plan was to have Jennifer (my darling better half) bring me a McDonald's cheeseburger and chocolate shake after this loop, so I focused on that and moved forward the best I could.

Loop three was completed around the 6:21 hour mark. Slowly, but surely, I was drifting away from my 50 mile plan. Oh well...just keep moving!

Loop four began with a delicious cheeseburger and shake in hand and after a much too short visit from my angelic wife. I was in good cheer, but moving slow. A couple of miles into loop four and I was getting very depressed. All I wanted to do was lay down and sleep (a bullet to the head seemed like an excellent idea). A few people zoomed by me on their fifth and sixth loops and I could only wish that I was moving at their speed. My 50 mile plan was dx'd and my new plan was to survive to the mid-course aid station and drop.

When I finally made it to the aid station, I sat down and took an ice cold sponge bath (no, not in the nude). A few PBJ quarters later I felt a ton better. Another runner (Mike Wallace) and I decided to stick together and finish at the 50k mark. We hooked up with two others and walked the yellow trail. Back to the mid-course aid station, they all stopped and I kept moving. I was feeling a lot better and wanted to run.

I crossed the finish line in 9:10:54. I was totally beat. My pride wanted another loop to make at least the 40 miles, but my body knew better. Maybe I need to stick to 50k's for a bit longer before moving up to 50 milers.

The saying goes :excused are like assholes...everyone's got one" and I have many...

1. The heat was killer. It slowed all the runners. It killed me.
2. Lack of long distance training. Except for races, I don't think that I have had one training run longer than marathon distance. This came back to bite me in the arse.
3. Did I mention the heat index of 133?!
4. Lack of back-to-back long runs.
5. Don't forget about the heat.
6. Vacation in Hawaii = 6 extra pounds!
7. It was hell hot.

Pitiful (for a proclaimed ultrarunner) 2008 runs by distance (everything over 25 miles were races):

Saturday, August 2, 2008




This was the aid station mid-course. You hit this station twice each loop.

Hitting the Wall

Mile 17.66...I'm in hell.

Loop 3

Damn! It"s hot!

One Loop Done...

Loop 1 done...5 more to go. Very hot!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Testing 1, 2, 3

Test post using Blackberry mms. Now I can post from anywhere using my Blackberry! Maybe I will do multiple updated posts from the Bartlett Park Ultra this Saturday...that may bore everyone to tears, though!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Ready for Bartlett Park

My mileage for the month has absolutely sucked. I think/hope I am ready for my third attempt at 50 miles (Bartlett Park Ultra, next Saturday). I ran the BPU course today as my last long run. It was very hot and humid and rained to make a nice muddy mess.

Vacation is Over

Sadly, our vacation to Hawaii has come to an end.

We did get a few runs/hikes in while in Waikiki.

Waikiki to Diamond Head and back (with stops for lunch and site-seeing):

Waikiki to the side of Diamond Head:

I have about 800 photos posted on my Picasa.

Monday, July 21, 2008


Sorry for the lack of updates!

Right now, I am in Hawaii with my beautiful bride, celebrating our forth anniversary! Not much running, but we've walked what seems more than a thousand miles!

Anyway...I'll be back in town on Friday and plan on running the BPU volunteer's run as long as I am not too jet-lagged!

Mahalo and aloha!

Sunday, July 13, 2008


We spent the weekend in Hot Springs, AR at the amusement park/water slide with the kids. It was very hot, but we all had a great time!

I did get to run both Saturday and Sunday in the "mountains" of Hot Springs, so I was even more ecstatic.

Saturday's run:

Sunday's run:

My mileage is half of what it should be, but I can't seem to get (and stay) motivated! My third attempt at a 50 miler is in less than three weeks and vacation starts in two days, so my mileage will probably remain mediocre, at best! Hopefully, I will have time for a few decent runs while in Hawaii!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Firecracker 5k

The 2007 St. Jude Firecracker 5k was my first race, which then led straight to my first 40 mile ultra, Bartlett Park. And so my ultra career began.

This years St. Jude Firecracker 5k was my lovely wife's first race and she did great! Her time by my watch (I ran bandit to pace her) was 34:30 and her chip time was 35:07. It was very hot and humid and, under those circumstances, I have to say that she kicked ass. Not the fastest by a long shot, but she finished with a smile on her face and a desire to run more it was a success.

Next for me is the 2nd annual Bartlett Park Ultra on August 3rd. Last year the temps & humidity came close to the century mark and I am quite sure it won't be any different this time. It was my first ultra and I covered 40 miles in under 12 hours. Sure, some of you can walk 40 miles in that time...but I was proud to just finish it!

I have attempted two 50 milers this year and missed the last cut-off in both. Bartlett Park will be my third attempt at 50 miles and I will be damned if I don't make it!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Me Again...

The lack of updates is directly correlated to my lack of interest in blogging lately. I'll try to get better though.

My wife and I have been running together a lot lately and it's been a wonderful change of pace! Our usual distance is 7-8 miles in about 1 hour and 30 minutes. She has improved vastly in a short time and seems to actually enjoy being out there sweating next to me. Her current 5k time is 34:16 and she can maintain under a 5mph pace through 4.5 miles without stopping. I am extremely proud of her! I still haven't conned her into the woodline for a bit of trail running, but hope is not lost!

My running has increased in the past few weeks. Last week, I made it past the 60 mile mark with two long runs of 16 and 24 miles. I have been somewhat lazy this week with my running (only two runs = 10m) and have felt very tired. I was hoping to pass 200m for the month, but I am short about 26 miles with only 3 days left. My yearly mileage has past the 1,000 mile mark! Hopefully, I will stay healthy throughout the year and pass the 2k mark by Christmas!


Weekly Distances
6/23/2008 — 6/29/2008: 10.2 Mi
6/16/2008 — 6/22/2008: 60.1 Mi
6/9/2008 — 6/15/2008: 47.4 Mi
6/2/2008 — 6/8/2008: 45.1 Mi
5/26/2008 — 6/1/2008: 31.9 Mi
5/19/2008 — 5/25/2008: 34.9 Mi

For the year (1016 Mi):
June: 174.1 Mi
May: 140.3 Mi
April: 150.0 Mi
March: 215.1 Mi
February: 134.7 Mi
January: 202.1 Mi

Thursday, June 12, 2008


Sorry for the lack of updates (to the few people who may actually read this blog!).

My running has been on a upswing this month (so far). Except for a few trail runs, I have been staying on the blacktop. I have run Bartlett Park so damn many times that I am beginning to really dread going there. Shelby Farms is great, but it's slightly out of the way for weekday runs. Shelby Forrest would be a welcome break, but it's a 30 minute drive to get there. So...the streets of Bartlett have been my mainstay this month for weekday runs. I have even run before work the past two days! It's a bitch to get up and make my old, tired body to move that early!

My lovely wife has been kicking ass on her running! I ran with her the last two afternoons (so damn hot outside!) for 7 miles and 7.66 miles, which to date, is her longest runs! I have yet to convince her to hit the trails, though. I am still working on that.

The weather is very hot and very humid. It's good for becoming heat acclimated for the upcoming summer...but, it's still a pain in the arse! Running on the treadmill is never much fun, but at least the gym has air conditioning (and a bathroom, and a water fountain, etc).

Friday, June 6, 2008

New Shoes

My new shoes finally arrived today! They are Adidas Adizero XT, a light-weight trail shoe. The initial run was on the streets because I didn't have them time to run the trails. The adizero's are very light, but still have enough support to feel great on the blacktop. I averaged 9min/mile for this run, so I am happy with my new shoes so far!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

More of the Same

Another run at Bartlett Park, but this time my body cooperated. I kept the pace steady and tried to only hike the uphills. My energy level stayed up and I was able to finish the run with a smile on my face.

On the most previous run at Bartlett Park, I used Clip2 in my Camelbak as my "energy" drink. The Clip2 has a supposedly has a light raspberry taste, but to me, it tastes like dookie. I used it a lot last summer with great success. There was one packet left, so I thought to try it again. The stuff works, but if I use it again I will definitely add some kool-aid flavoring!

For yesterday's run I used HEED. During the Mississippi 50, I had severe bloating issues that I blamed on HEED mainly because I used it for the first time during the race. I had two packets of HEED left from previous SWAG bags and wanted to test it again...during training this time.

The flavoring of the HEED leaves much to be say the least. It does taste better than Clip2, though. I had a 24oz hand-held with HEED and another with tap water. Pulling from both during the run, I had no real gastric issues except occasional belching. The training run with HEED went a lot better than the run with Clip2, so I will continue to run with HEED for the time being.

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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Is It Summer Already?!

Saturday's run was at Bartlett Park. The original plan was for two laps, but that was revised before I made it half way through the first. It was hot and humid, without even a slight breeze. I did great for the first few miles and then steadily declined from there. My energy just disappeared. What started as a run ended up a hike. They say that there is no such thing as a bad run...but I have to wonder sometimes.

Sunday's run was mostly on the blacktop. I carried two hand-helds of H2O and a flask of gel. I figured that if I ran out of water, I could stop at a gas station and purchase more. The weather was the same as Saturday, the only difference being that I didn't have the comfort of the woods to shade out the sun.

I started the run without direction as to where I wanted to go. After a few miles, I found myself in a farmer's field off of Hwy 14. I did not feel like running back the way I came, so I went to the far end of the field to search for a way out to the highway. The woods were very thick and, I am quite sure, full of poison ivy and ugly spiders. I followed the woodline south, hoping for a passage out. Finally, I gave up and crashed through the woods and finding the highway. My shoes were full of burrs, stickers, and mud. I made my south on Hwy 14, toward Old Brownsville Rd. My plan was to refuel at the gas station but, of course, decided to keep moving since I had (what I thought) plenty of water left.

Needless to say, I ran out of water a short time later. Fuck. It was so damn humid and I was sweating like a pig at the butcher (pigs really don't sweat...but you get the picture). Not a damn store in sight. Quail Ridge Gold Course was in my current direction and I knew that they had water coolers on the course. I made it there still coherent and refilled both bottles. The golf course is only a couple of miles from my house, so I figured I would survive to run another day.

Yesterday's run was on the treadmill...boring, but I know exactly where the water fountain is!

Monday, May 26, 2008

No Rest For the Wicked

Except for stiff, painful quads, hamstrings, and calves...I felt great Sunday morning. It was a sunny day and very humid. A great day for a trail run!

To add insult to injury, I wore my Five Fingers. I thought it would be fun to inflict further pain on my calves...punishment for running like a wussy the day before.

It turned out to be great run without any pains (except for a blister)! Now time for a couple of days rest before I start training for Bartlett Park in August. Forget taking time off...too much down time would drive me nuts anyway.

Scenic City Trail Marathon

My third marathon (first trail marathon) is now in the books. My overall goal was to finish in under 7 second goal was to finish without injury. My unofficial time was 6:14:58...first goal accomplished. I did not have any injuries or even a blister...second goal accomplished. I arrived to the start area about an hour early. I wanted to make sure I didn't repeat my late arrival error at the MS50 again! Check-in was uneventful and quick, so I still had a lot of time to waste. Once the morning ritualistic potty break was tended to, I caught up with Michael and Drew. I also ran into another local ultrarunner, Bill Luton and his wife. David Ray was there and I had the pleasure of meeting him (sorry I couldn't talk longer, Dave!). The race started without much fanfare, albeit a few minutes late. After a bit of blacktop running, we enter the trail. The congo line was long, but moving at a decent warm-up pace. After a mile, the smart people started their run/walk routine and the rest of us breezed past them. I was behind Michael and Drew until right before the first aid station. I couldn't catch my breath and had to slow to a walk. Looking at my Garmin, I noticed my heart rate was pegged out at 181...which is above my max! Well, shit. After walking a bit, my HR would get down to about 165, which is still too high considering I was walking. Of course, I was sweating profusely as my body was trying to regulate itself to lower my HR. After the first aid station, my HR stayed in the 170's when running and the 150's when walking. I felt ok and continued at decent pace without any problems. On training runs, my heart rate usually averages 145. I wasn't sure what was going on, but figured I would keep going and walk as needed to keep it from hitting max again. In the back of my mind I kept thinking about how a continuously high HR was going to sap all my energy as the day wore on. Well, shit again. The trail was well maintained, but had a shitload of rocks and roots for your tripping pleasure. Although I never bit the dust, I did trip...a lot. Each time I caught a root I would catch my balance with an awful forward lunge. This re-aggravated an old groin pull injury as well as pissed me off. After a few trips I thought a couple of Aleve would relieve the pain. Of course, it would have been great to actually have some Aleve, but I forgot to bring any! Well, shit once again. Historically, RD's have let it be known that the runners should not ask for pain meds and that they wouldn't give them out anyway, so I didn't bother to beg the aid station workers. By mile 9 and countless more trips, my hip was very, very sore. The pain affected my gait, which then caused my opposite side knee to hurt. Let me tell's a bitch being old. Of course, I never paid attention to the pre-race speech, so I assumed we would pass the start area (and our cars) after the first loop. I needed my second water bottle and wanted to drop off my camera. Well...we didn't pass go and I was not able to get to my car. In hindsight, this was actually a good thing for me. My hip was hurting and I was feeling sorry for myself. If I had the chance to go by the car, the temptation to drop may have been too great. The second loop was lonely. Except for one runner passing me in the opposite direction (he decided to call it a day) and the aid station workers, I never saw another soul. I tried to power hike as much as possible and even ran a bit, but the day was taking its toll on my old, fat ass. The second aid station on the loop came up around mile 17 and I said rules be damned...I needed some pain meds! The young lady reached into a large medical bin a whooped out ibuprofen and Tylenol! Well, shit! I should have asked for drugs 15 miles ago!!! After downing 3 ibuprofen and refilling the h2o, I was on my way. Within the next 30 minutes, my hip/knee pains had faded enough to run without hurting. The next (and last) aid station was at mile 20.72, as noted on my Garmin 305. When the worker said I only had 2.2 miles left I could only stare in disbelief. Maybe the elevation changes were fooling my trusty Garmin shy of almost 4 miles. Who knows, but I was not about to protest and request the "extra" miles! The mileage on the Garmin at the end of the race stated I had run a mere 23.49 miles in 6:14:58. Thank God it was over! I was somewhat happy with my time, although I believe the course was not a full marathon distance. My last marathon (St. Jude, Dec '07) was 5:20:31, so an extra 54 minutes and over 5,000 feet in elevation change was ok enough for me. More pictures here.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Time for a Break?

The past two weeks have been very crappy for me as far as running goes. My mileage has decreased drastically, mainly because of lack of time and motivation. My body is just not into the running mode. I have felt very tired...almost exhausted. I have run four ultras since the end of January, so maybe it's time for a break. Maybe my system needs some extended rest. I guess I'm getting old!

I did have two great runs. A 21 miler on the yellow trail at Shelby Farms last Saturday and a 8.3 miler at Bartlett Park this morning. Today's run felt great and my body seemed to be getting back into the groove. I have the Scenic City Trail Marathon in one week, so I will take it easy the rest of the week.

After the trail marathon, I will take a much needed break. The next race will be in July (Midnight 50k). Then the wife and I are going to Hawaii for our anniversary! I hope to run up and around Diamond Head!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Long Run

Saturday's long run was at Shelby Farms on the yellow trail. I parked at the ranger's station instead of the kite area to add just a tad more distance to the run. Twice from the ranger's station to Germantown Rd via the yellow trail came to 21.5 miles.

The first outbound (5.4 miles) took 1 hour 4 minutes. I knew I could do better, so I pushed just a bit harder on the first inbound and came in 7 minutes faster by my count. Not much to brag about, but negative splits are rare for me!

The second outbound and inbound took a lot longer than the first, but hey...I needed to practice my "power-hiking" anyway! I also stopped at the Shell station on G'town Rd to fill up with H2O, Coke, and Pringles!

For the first lap, I ran in my trusty Nike Free 3.0s. These are my "go-to" shoes for non-technical trail running. For the second lap, I ran in my new Zoot Ultra Tempos. These shoes are made for triathletes, but I figured they could work for me as well. I was not disappointed with the Zoots, but at the same time, I was not overly impressed either. I may wear them for the trail marathon coming up, but need to get more miles on them first.

Today was supposed to be another long run of around 10 miles, but (as of 4:18pm) I have yet to get outside to run. Household chores come first!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Ouachita Video

I forgot to show ya'll this short video of me on the downside of Pinnacle Mountain during the Ouachita 50.

Stupid Is As Stupid Does

I never cease to amaze myself (or my wife) at how stupid I can be. Today's run was at Bartlett Park. My plan was to run after work, before the rain came in. I haven't run here in some time and wasn't sure of the condition of the trails with all the rain in the past month(s). I also haven't run in my Five Fingers in a long time. bright (stupid) idea was to run Bartlett Park in Five Fingers!

The trails were a total mess. There was long areas of mud bog throughout and the creek had about six inches of "stanky" water in it. With the FF's, I had no traction whatsoever. I lost count of the number of times I fell on my ass because my feet slid out from under me. Once down in the creek, I thought I would never get out! The sides were very slick, so I had to move down to where I could grab ahold of some roots and pull myself up.

The FF's force me to a mid-foot foot strike. I am by nature more of a heel striker, so the mid-foot strike starts to hurt my calves and hips after a few miles. I kept my pace slow and my feet under me the best I could.

All in all, I had a great time in the woods and in the mud! Today is my 41st birthday and I am just happy to be able to still run!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Long Run

I ended the day at 7pm with 20.63 miles on the blacktop (I figured the trails would be too wet and muddy today). All attempts to start my run early this morning were thwarted by my laziness. I finally hit the road around 11:30, which allowed only about 90 minutes to run before I had to get back home and get the car to the shop for an oil change. This first run was 9.16 miles. I wanted to keep running, but other appointments needed tending.

The second run was 11.45 miles. I wasn't really wanting to run by this point, but I knew that my ass needed to be out there. Midway into the run, I ran out of gas. I only brought one Hammer gel for fuel, which didn't help much. I finally made it back home in a somewhat respectable 2 hours and 15 minutes...having walked ALOT during the run and the entire last mile.

After a Recoverite drink and a delicious dinner, I feel ok. No pains and not too tired. I am planning on running at least 15 miles tomorrow on the trails at Shelby Farms to finish out the week.

Run #2
Run #1

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Scenic City Trail Marathon

Doesn't this look like a shitload of fun?

Here's the motionbased view (click me!) showing elevations.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Recovery Complete; Training Begins

My body seems to have recovered significantly from the last two races enough to begin training for the Scenic City Trail Marathon on May 24th. I ran an easy 25 miles last week without too much trouble or pain. It was slow going, but still going. Today's run was right less than 9 miles at a 9:25 pace. My legs tired a bit mid-run, but I was able to keep the pace up. I wanted to run further, but did not have more time. I am now 5.3 miles short of 700 for the year. Since tomorrow is the last day of April, I will run at least the 5.3 miles even though Wednesday is supposed to be a weight day. Oh well...weights can wait til Thursday.

Today's splits:

1 10:27 (forgot my phone on top of my car and had to go back!)
2 9:25
3 9:04
4 8:49
5 9:13
6 8:49
7 9:57
8 9:30
9 6:47 (0.7 miles)

Not too shabby for an old man!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Ouachita Photos

Almost forgot to show my pics of the Ouachita 50!

Here's the link.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Stepping Back

I have decided to scale back my ultra races for now and concentrate on training with more long runs. I have DNF the two 50 mile attempts and this really pisses me off. So, I will drop a few races on my list and concentrate more on 50k races. The next 50 miler will be the second annual Bartlett Ultra in August.

As for training, I will do more long runs and less runs under 8 miles. I'm thinking that I should do the following (for example):

Mon - off
Tues - 5 to 8 miles
Wed - weights
Thurs - 5 to 8 miles
Fri - off
Sat - 20 to 30 miles (depending on upcoming races)
Sun - 10 to 20 miles (depending on upcoming races)

With the children's school functions, dance, baseball, and band there is not much free time to run during the week. Add in the my wife wants to run also and you have a logistical nightmare. The weekends are a little easier to manage, especially if I start my runs around 6am.

I keep having to tell myself that I have only been running since last May and not to get too discouraged. My goals were set slightly too high and hopefully I can get them reset without too much difficulty.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Still Not There

The morning was crisp with a full moon slowly descending in the horizon. At 6am, we were all lined up at the pavilion gate. Without much fanfare, we started the race. I wanted to be as conservative as possible...without killing my time. The first three miles were on blacktop and then we hit the Ouachita trail.

The ascent up Pinnacle Mountain was a mother fucker. The descent was not much better. On the way up, we had to scale small boulders...climbing around like goats. On the way down, the trail consisted of large rocks that you had to carefully set on or you could tumble down and break your damn neck. Once on the other side of the mountain, we circled back around to the first aid station and then headed west.

We popped out of the woods, crossed our first of many highways and ran down past the "iron bridge" to the spillway. This area was very muddy and slow going. The remaining trail up to the first cut-off at the Northshore aid station was littered with rocks and small creek crossings. If you did not remain hyper-vigilant, you would end up on your face. I tripped quite a few times, but was always able to catch myself before eating dirt.

Once past the Northshore, we crossed yet another highway and continued to skirt Lake Maumelle. The mudpuddles continued to get bigger and I gave up trying to keep my feet dry. My North Face Arnuva Boas were falling apart. I could see my toes on my right foot through a tear caused by rocks & sticks. The other shoe was not much better. Oh well...I knew that I had a dry pair of Nike Free's in my drop bag at the turn-around.

I had a little more than two hours to make it 10 miles to the next cut-off. Doing some quick math in my head, I figured I could make it without any problems even if I only power-walked. Fuck...was I wrong! I made the next aid station with less than 30 minutes to the cut-off...and more than two long miles to go before getting there! There were three of us...and we all high-tailed it through the woods. It seemed that the entire distance was up-fucking-hill! Fuck a duck! I ran as hard as I could and when I couldn't push anymore, I power-hiked my ass down the trail until I could run again. With a mere 30 seconds left, I made the cut-off (26.6 miles in 7 hours). All three of us made it. We were spent. Dead. After fueling up, it was time to run again to make the next cut-off (10 miles in 2.5 hours). I decided against changing shoes or socks, since it would take up too much time.

More quick math in my pee-brain, I figured I would power hike to the next aid station and then run/hike the remaining distance. At the aid station, I ate a delicious turkey sandwich and some chocolate and thought all was right with the world. After running about 1/10 of a mile, both calfs decided to seize up. Fuck another damn duck. I had been taking an S!Cap every hour or so and decided to pop two to help loosen up my legs. I walked a few miles until I was able to run again. My energy level was low, but my spirits remained high. My quick math had once again let me down. At the unmanned water station, I caught up with a older gent. We discussed our time/mileage situation and decided that we had to run a 5k in less than 30 minutes to make the final cut-off. He decided that this was impossible for him, so I left him to his own fate. Of course, this was impossible for me also, but I have been labeled a retard for a reason.

I missed the cut-off by 15 minutes. My day was over. I had covered a little over 36 miles in 9:45:40. I felt that I could have made the whole 50 miles in the remaining 3 hours, but the volunteers said otherwise.

All in all, I had a great time! Climbing Pinnacle Mnt was outstanding! The views from the top are well worth the pain that would surely come the rest of the day.

Mistakes made...

- I spent too much time worrying about keeping my feet dry (which they didn't). I need to just plow through the damn water and mud and quit wasting precious time.
- I did not ingest sufficient calories. I was worried about repeating my gastric issues from the MS50 last month, so I didn't drink enough water (it was 80 degrees) or enough liquid cals (Perpetuem) and did not eat enough. This was not evident until after the halfway point and probably too late by then. I did not have any gastric distress though!
- My Camelbak burned the shit out of my back. I had too much unneeded crap in it, making it very heavy. Even now, my back hurts more than anything else.
- I ran a 6 hour race five days prior. My body did not have sufficient time to prep for this race.

Lessons learned...
- Eat more, drink more...but within reason.
- Carry less shit. I carried everything and had even more in my drop bag. How much of it did I use? Not much! My Camelbak probably weighed a good 10 pounds.
- Keep an even and steady pace. Don't start too fast and don't walk so much. Once again, my energy level could have been much higher.
- Don't run a 6 hour race five days before your 50 miler! I should have skipped the Memphis Ultra 6 Hour, but I still enjoyed running both!
- North Face Arnuva's suck.

After all is said and done, I believe that I have improved since the MS50 in March. Ouachita was 10 times harder in my opinion, even if you took Pinnacle Mnt out of the picture! Of course, if I took Pinnacle out, then I would have made the cut-offs easily! I will continue to train and improve and will be at this race next year...and finish all 50 damn rocky miles!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Memphis Ultra 6 Hour Endurance Race

Although the turn out was lower than expected, we all still had a great time! The course was great and even had a swampy, muddy, standing water section to run no extra charge!

Thanks to the Memphis Ultra crew (Holly, Drew, Michael, Claire, Ella Kate, Patrick, Ann Marie, Mr. Dodd) for putting on a great race and keeping us all fed and safe!

I ended the day with 8 laps (24.42 miles per my Garmin) and tied for first place with Michael. I offered to Indian wrestle in the nude for the prize, but he declined. Of course, had he not taken it easy on me all day, he would have many more miles. And...had Drew not arrived three hours late, and had Patrick not stopped early to drink beer, and had Holly actually run more instead of taking care of everyone...then I would not have won the grand prize. Lucky me!

The best part of the run was the end. No...not because it was over! As I turned the final corner, I saw a beautiful sight that almost brought me to tears (of course, being a manly man...that wasn't going to happen in public!). My lovely wife came out to see me finish six hours of running. This meant a lot to me and I am forever grateful to her for putting up with my running!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Be Free of Yourself...

This is how I feel after a couple of hours of running...

Thursday, April 10, 2008


I was tagged by Travis Liles to play a little game called "six word memoir". I also stole his post format (as he stole from Bad Ben Holmes) be warned these are the types of things I will do when tagged.

Here are the rules:
1) Write your own six word memoir
2) Post it on your blog and include a visual illustration if you want
3) Link to the person that tagged you in your post, and to the original post if possible so we can track it as it travels across the blogosphere
4) Tag at least five more blogs with links
5) Leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play!

Lately, my body has felt so damn tired...all the time. I don't have real specific pains, just general aches all over. I have two ultras in the next 10 days. After that, I will attempt to take some time off and let my body get back to normal.

Here is my six word memoir:

"mother fucker, I am so tired"

Now, time to tag ...Patrick, Michael, Dirty D

Sunday, April 6, 2008


My weekly mileage has dropped from the 60's (two weeks in a row) to the 30's (the last two weeks in a row). One excuse for that is all the damn rain, which forced me inside the gym to run the treadmill (uhg!). Another excuse is all the after school activities the step children have that involve me taking and picking them up. And the last excuse is that my youngest son was in town all week. Regardless of all my lame excuses, there was plenty of time that could have been dedicated to running, but I was too lazy. I need to start getting up earlier than my normal 4:50 am to get in some extra mileage now that spring is here!

In one week, I will be running in the 6 Hour Memphis Ultra. My plan is to run at least 25 miles at a leisurely pace. The Saturday following is the Oauchita 50, so I don't want any injuries!

Last two non-treadmill runs:

April 5th:

March 27th:

Monday, March 24, 2008

Back to Normal

Spring break is over and the step-children are back from their trip to Disney with their father. I am glad that they are back, mind you...but this alters my available time to run. We have band, dance, and baseball practices to tend to once again after a week of freedom. So it will be a while before anymore +60 mile weeks of running (which my body won't mind!).

In the past two weeks I have run slightly more than 126 miles without physical injuries. By the end of each week, I felt dead...but elated to be able to cover the miles. I averaged 10 miles each run, with the longest run being 16.6 miles (I need to go longer, damn it!).

My wife has also increased her mileage in the past couple of weeks! Her long run is now above 7 miles (up from 4 miles just two weeks ago). I am very proud of her and look forward to running many miles with her! Now, if I could just get her on the trails...

Easter weekend runs:




Saturday, March 22, 2008

Happy Easter!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Running in the Windy City of...

...not Chicago, but Bartlett. Today's run was very, very windy. It seemed that no matter which direction I was headed, I was still running into the howling wind! Tired legs and lack of motivation killed yesterday's planned run and almost did the same to today's, but I forced myself outside to get in at least 4 miles before the rain started (which, at 8:26 pm, has yet to hit). I finally got into a groove after a few miles and ended with 10.11 miles in 1:42 (10:02 pace). Not bad for an easy run (except for the winds).

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Germantown Half

All went well today at the race. No problems except a sore ass and tight hamstring & calf. I (once again) started too fast and had to slow it down and settle into a 9:30-ish pace. A few stops to stretch out the legs and one stop to socialize with some ultra friends on the sidelines. Great race...made even better due to the fact that I didn't cough up $45 (I did not use any aid provided by the race...except a few cookies at the end!).

Great to see that Mike, Holly, Drew, and Lauren ran like the wind! Their finish times make me feel real old(er)! Congrats to Kristi & Brad for finishing in great time, especially since neither have ever run that far before!

My time: 2:06:06 (9:33 pace)
My Splits:
1 8:50
2 8:53
3 9:04
4 9:08
5 10:03
6 9:40
7 9:49
8 9:39
9 10:20
10 9:46
11 10:17
12 9:49
13 9:49
14 1:02

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Today's run almost didn't happen. The weather sucked all damn day. I thought about going to the gym to run the treadmill, but that didn't sound too fun. I finally decided to head to Shelby Farms to run on the paved paths and prayed it would not rain again. Although it did not rain, the wind was blowing hard and the temps were in the low 50's. Not too bad, but I prefer better.

My pace was too fast for the first 6 miles and I knew that I would pay dearly for this mistake later. I kept it steady for 10 miles and then my right hamstring and calf muscles started to lock up. I tend to sweat profusely when running due to being a fat ass...and today was no exception. Trying to keep my gut from bloating again, I had kept the water intake to bear minimum (20 oz H2O for entire run) and only had one gel (at 6m mark). I had a S!Cap at the start and another at the halfway. Figuring all this, I assumed that I was dehydrated and was experiencing some lactic acid build up in the legs. Oh well...I stopped to stretch several times and had to walk for a minute of so during mile 12, but I kept moving forward.

This story is getting too, to sum it all up:
Total: 13.16 miles in 2:07:03 (9:39 pace) (PR)
10k time was at 56 minutes and change (PR)
1 9:25
2 8:37
3 8:57
4 9:04
5 8:37
6 9:19
7 10:25
8 9:25
9 9:59
10 9:45
11 10:42
12 10:10
13 11:48
14 1:45

I am amazed at my endurance level since the MS50 two weeks ago. That race, even though I fell short of 50 miles, was a turning point for me. Before then, I would walk way too much in practice runs and races. I didn't have the confidence needed to successfully finish a marathon, let alone an ultramarathon. Now I do have that confidence and I can force my fat ass to hold a decent pace throughout each run.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

On the Road...Again

Today's run was supposed to be a short 4 miles before dinner. I really didn't even feel like running. My legs were starting to feel a little dead and my right hip and ankle was sore. Since it's supposed to rain tomorrow, I felt it necessary to run today (and rest tomorrow).

I set out a little after 4pm. Other than being windy, the weather was great! I decided to run somewhere other than my normal 4 mile route. I went through a few neighborhoods that I have never seen and ended up back on Old Brownsville Rd. This road is fairly narrow and the cars love to speed by. I spent a lot of time in the ditch...trying to not become road kill. Right on Oak for a bit and then a right on Broadway took me back to the five-way. My brain said to take another right and head home, but my body wanted more miles. So...more miles it got. I ended up with 8.4 miles in 1:21:16 (9:39 pace). I felt great and wanted to see what my time would be at 13.1 miles, but my wife had told me that dinner was served at 6pm and I know it wouldn't be wise to be late.

No gels, only 20 oz Propel (only drank 3/4). Once again, no gastric issues. For my long run on Saturday, I will start adding Perpetuem back into it and see if it causes any issues.

1 9:28
2 8:48
3 9:59
4 9:38
5 10:21
6 9:36
7 9:49
8 9:55
9 3:51

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Another Great Run

I hit Bartlett Park this afternoon for multiple reasons. First was to obtain an elevation profile for the Bartlett Park Ultra (Aug 2nd). Second was in hopes of continuing a (so far) great week of running. And lastly...the weather was beautiful and I needed to be in the woods.

A lot of muddy and wet areas throughout the trails slowed my pace, but all in all I kept it steady without much effort. I only took one gel and 24 oz of water and had no problems with bloating (I usually drink 40 oz of water for this course...which would tend to bloat me).

Tomorrow's plan is for slow and low mileage. Friday will be an off day (it's supposed to rain). Saturday is for long run and Sunday for recovery run (G'town Half Marathon).

Studly gotta love daylight savings time! With the extra hour of daylight, I can get more than a few miles in well before dark!

I wanted to see if I could top my great runs on Monday with one complete run yesterday. I started out around six-ish, figuring I had at least an 90 minutes before dark. I wanted to run at least 6 miles before even thinking about heading back to the house. I also wanted to run without any extra fueling (except one gel and 20oz of Propel) to see start ruling out things that cause gastric distension in previous runs. I am happy to report no gut problems during the entire run!

I intentionally kept my pace below 10min/mile to see how far I could last. Once again, I know that this pace is fairly slow for most of you, but it's truckin' for my big ass. I was able to keep pace except when having to wait on traffic. I wanted to keep running after 10 miles, but it was getting late and I was getting very hungry. I was extremely pleased with the run which was another PR for me!

1 9:56
2 9:11
3 10:00
4 9:13
5 9:29
6 9:30
7 10:05
8 9:23
9 10:27
10 9:31

Monday, March 10, 2008

G'town Half Marathon

I've decided to use this Sunday's Germantown Half Marathon as a recovery run from Saturday's long run. They are asking $45 to register...just to run 13 miles. I refuse to pay more than most ultras, so I will run as a bandit. I could run on the trails by my lonesome, but it's nice to run with a group of people so I can gauge my progress.

Anyone else care to join me?

Training Begins...Again

After the MS50, I took off the entire week. Although I wasn't too sore, I figured a week off would allow my system to get back to normal with rest.

My plan for Saturday was to hit Bartlett Park in the early AM before the snow started to melt. I was dressed out and ready to go when I was called in to work. By the time I finally got to Bartlett Park that afternoon, the snow had melted from the trails and it was like running up through a very cold and muddy creek. I ran the white trail up to the Outhouse loop and then headed back down the fire road to Memphis-Arlington Rd. Tired of running through all the water, I hit the streets for a few miles, ending back at my car with a little over 5 miles.

I wanted to run Sunday, but I had too many other things to do. So, I had to wait until today for another running fix.

Today's runs were split into two. The first part was on the treadmill at the gym while I waited on my step-son to finish band practice. I ran 4.1 miles in 36:48 (8:59 pace), which is a treadmill PR for me (I's slow for most of you). The second run was on the streets after I got home. This was 4.55 miles in 42:02 (9:14 pace), which is another PR for me! I almost scrubbed the second run due to being tired, but figured I would run at least a couple of easy miles. By the end of the first mile, I was feeling great and kept running.

And so begins my training for Ouachita 50. I will most likely run just the 50k, but will decide later.



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